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Tablets outpacing computers as place to watch TV shows [study]

People who own tablets watch more full-length TV programming on their devices than their computers, finds a new study by Viacom. “In just a few years, tablets have risen to second-screen prominence for full-length TV show viewing, ahead of computers. Yet, television still provides the better experience,” explains Stuart Schneiderman with Viacom Media Networks. The study found that tablet owners spend 15% of their time spent watching full-length TV (FLTV) shows on a tablet.

Viacom’s research went beyond the iPad to include Kindle, Samsung, HP and other tablet manufacturers. Perhaps more valuable, the study looked at what influenced tablet owners to watch TV shows:

  • Among tablet owners who subscribe to a cable company that offers streaming apps, about half report downloading the app. These MSO app users spend 20% more time on their tablet than non-MSO app users.
  • 24% of Airplay users watch FLTV shows on their tablets, while the same can be said for 22% of MSO app users and 19% of Netflix users.
  • Over one third of both AirPlay (35%) and Whispersync (34%) users say they watch more TV on their tablets because of these apps.

“As tablet ownership becomes more widespread and tablets themselves evolve, we predict these devices will increasingly transform not only how and when we use other devices, but how and when we consume all kinds of content,” says Schneiderman. Certainly a safe prediction, given the growth curve of these devices and the fact Viacom found that 62% of tablet owners use their devices every day for an average of 2.4 hours. Wow.

Here are some interviews that Viacom conducted with tablets owners (above). You can see a few more findings in the full study, and we’re compiling tablet research here.

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