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We're Watching 10 Minutes Less TV a Day in the UK Despite Binge Viewing

By Gerald Lynch on at

Despite "premium" TV shows like Game of Thrones and Mad Men and increased numbers of catch-up services, UK goggleboxers are watching less television than they have for years before.

Over 2014, UK viewers watched roughly ten minutes 30 seconds less TV daily, with a fall of 4.5 per cent in viewing on TV sets while "other devices", including laptops, tablets and mobiles, saw viewing figures rise 17 per cent.

Despite the decline of traditional TV and rise in mobile viewing, there's still a massive gulf in volume viewed. Over a seven day period, UK viewers will watch an average of 3 hours, 41 minutes on a traditional TV set, and just 3 minutes, 30 seconds on portable devices.

The data, compiled by Thinkbox (the marketing body for commercial TV) based on BARB data shows some interesting trends that may seem counter to what you'd expect -- despite time shifted TV, we're still sitting through 45 adverts a day on average, and even with second-room TVs and mobile viewing, 86 per cent of all viewing takes place in the living room.

"TV viewing is changing and the data needs to be examined very carefully to understand what is actually going on," said Lindsey Clay, Thinkbox Chief Executive.

"After years of record growth for broadcast TV as on-demand began to flower, new viewing trends are now becoming established and there’s a new eco-system for TV. It is nuanced, it raises new opportunities for advertisers, it reflects how modern viewers want to enjoy TV – and it is a royal pain in the arse for BARB to measure. But, it is here, it is the future and we should embrace it."