Average Person Spends 1.3 Years Looking for Something to Watch on TV

You’re wasting your life, a new report finds

Last Updated: November 3, 2016 @ 12:02 PM

If you feel like you’re wasting your life trying to find something on TV, a new study says you’re probably right.

The average person will spend 1.3 years just flipping between broadcast channels and checking TV guides for something to watch, according to the latest Ericsson ConsumerLab TV and Media Report. It’s the same in the U.S. and more than half of the 24 countries in this year’s study.

The study found that the average American broadcast TV viewer will spend 23 minutes a day flipping channels, which adds up quickly.

An earlier survey revealed that viewers of streaming platforms like Netflix take an average of 18 minutes per viewing session trying to find something to watch, compared to 9 minutes for traditional TV.

While consumers have to spend more time looking for something to watch on Video on Demand services, 63 percent of them are satisfied with their experience, compared to 51 percent of traditional TV consumers, perhaps due to the fact that on-demand viewing options don’t have the time constraints of live TV schedules.

The Ericsson report was collected from surveying more than 30,000 people aged 16-29 across markets, including Australia, China, Brazil, South Africa and the UK.

The study found that since 2012, consumers are watching more TV than ever, with viewing time on mobile devices increasing 4 hours a week and fixed device-watching decreasing 2.5 hours a week — a surplus of 1.5 hours a week.

Consumers are also paying more than ever for VOD — an average of $20 per month, up from $13 four years ago.