Conventional TV is not dead. In 2010, the amount of live, linear telly watched by the average Brit jumped by 124 minutes per week to an all-time high 28 hours and 15 minutes per week, says BARB data published by Thinkbox.
The latter, a group which promotes TV as an advertising medium, says live viewing is actually being fuelled by people using on-demand services to catch-up with the live broadcast schedule.
But it’s also because BARB introduced a new measurement system in January 2010, and perhaps because more Brits stayed indoors during a snowy winter. Live talent contests like X Factor remain big draws, too.
1 / 4BARB/Thinkbox 2010 UK TV Viewing - linear
2 / 4BARB/Thinkbox 2010 UK TV Viewing - Time-shifted
3 / 4BARB/Thinkbox 2010 UK TV Viewing - Time-shifting platforms
4 / 4BARB/Thinkbox 2010 UK TV Viewing - Recorded times
It means on-demand viewing hours were 7.6 percent of the total, against the 92.4 percent which were live.
But the organisations have not specified on-demand hours, and the figures it they have given measure only the on-demand services used on TV sets (eg. Sky+, V+), not PC, web and mobile services like iPlayer and 4oD. BARB says a separate data set, which does account for these devices, adds just one percent more TV hours to the total pot.
Thinkbox now thinks this new high-water mark for live linear viewing may turn out to be a “peak” for the medium.