A growing number of consumers are closing their laptops and turning on their connected TVs for their daily dose of entertainment, according to a new report from Conviva, which also notes that streaming TV consumption has more than doubled YoY.
In Q2 2018, viewing hours on connected TVs increased by 115% as compared to the same period last year. Another indication of the growth in streaming TV is the impressive increase Conviva saw in peak concurrent plays, as 7.9 million people tuned in during the World Cup, which amounted to 118% growth in peak concurrency from the same time period last year.
Additionally, the Conviva data shows a continued shift away from PCs and towards mobile and tablet devices, especially for short-form content. The share of viewing hours on PCs dropped 6 percentage points from 26 percent in Q2 2017 to 20 percent in Q2 2018. Most of the shift in viewing hours seems to have transitioned to connected TVs which gained 4 percentage points over the same time period.
For clarification, Conviva defines Plays as the total number of times a viewer successfully starts a video stream and viewing hours as the total number of hours of video content streamed from all plays. The research firm notes that this measure is most indicative of the size of the streaming market.
Meanwhile, long-form content has shifted towards larger screens and connected TV platforms – especially those which connect to TVs externally. Roku continues to be the number one choice for consumers, commanding nearly 8% of all plays, while Sony’s PlayStation Vue and Google’s Chromecast experienced the fastest YoY growth, both north of 150% YoY.
Digital publishers have started to adapt to this shift in viewing habits. This year both Condé Nast and Refinery29 announced plans to launch TV apps. Condė Nast alone will launch three separate streaming apps for its brands Wired, Bon Appétit, and GQ.
In addition to standalone apps, many digital-first companies have launched channels on OTT TV services. For example, Revry, AwesomnessTV, Geek&Sundry, Cracked, Jash, TYT Network, Cheddar, and Jukin Media have all partnered with PlutoTV to make their content more accessible to those viewing via connected TVs.
Legacy networks have also increased focus on making their content available to these viewers. Most recently, CBS News announced plans to launch CBS Local, an OTT platform for local news. The new app will add onto CBS’ growing collection of OTT services, which, in addition to the aforementioned platform includes CBS Sports HQ, a streaming sports-news service, and CBS All Access, a subscription-based product.