Comcast Homes Hike TV Use 15 Minutes a Day in 2Q

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Comcast households spent 15 more minutes with television per day during the coronavirus-infected second quarter of 2020 than they did the year before, according to a new report from Comcast’s Effectv advertising unit.

The gains came from cable (up 12 minutes), broadcast (up 5 minutes) and DVR/VOD usage (up 3 minutes).

While cord-cutting has reduced the number of Comcast TV households, Effectv said that they consumed 8.5 billion hours of TV in the quarter, an increase of 17 hours per household.

On the household level, time spent with TV has increased over the eight quarters of measured data in those Comcast subscriber homes.

“TV viewership is on the rise, and has been for the past eight quarters,” said John Brauer, executive director of Data, Insights and Innovation at Effectv. “The increases we see when comparing Q2 2020 to the same quarter last year is evidence of the resilience of TV during this unprecedented time. Despite the absence of much of the live sports programming, consumers still rely on TV for entertainment and information – perhaps something they need now more than ever before.”

Effectv said that the majority of viewing--68%--goes to cable TV, up one share point. Broadcast was also up slightly while premium network share was down 2 share points. Video on demand was used by 80% of households and time spent with on-demand TV shows and movies was up 15% from a year ago.

Effectv also looked at the effect of TV sports on viewing behavior. It found that sports viewers were among the most reliable TV viewers. The returns of Major League Baseball, the National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League averaged a 71% jump over last year, with 2.5 million household tuning in.

In addition to watching their favorite sports, 55% of sports fans watch more than three other sports as well. Effectv said it has developed an Effectv Sports Matrix to help advertisers find audiences. The Matrix indicates that big Major League Baseball fans also watch NHL, golf and NCAA hoops.

“TV remains a powerful channel for advertisers to reach their audience at scale,” added Maria Weaver, CMO, Comcast Advertising. “And today, with consumers fragmenting their viewing across screens, an audience-based approach is critical for marketers. Despite the headwinds we’re encountering in 2020, we see that brands who stay on-air and take a forward-looking, data-based approach benefit in both in the short- and long-term.”

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.