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Multicultural Groups Embrace Multiplatform TV

Asians, Hispanics and African Americans who have broadband connections are more likely than whites to own video-enabled handheld devices, and broadband users among these groups also have higher viewing rates of TV online, according to a new study by Horowitz Associates.

The study, which has important implications for the multicultural and multiplatform strategies of multichannel providers, found that 84% of Asians, 83% of Hispanics and 83% of black broadband users could access video on a handheld device, a higher proportion than whites (74%). Almost half of Asian broadband users (48%) watched TV content online each week followed by 46% of Hispanic broadband users. Blacks and whites reported about the same usage, with 35% of the broadband users watching TV content online weekly.

About 16% of Asian, 22% of Hispanic, 19% of black and 15% of white broadband users watched TV content on a handheld device each week, according to the new study, Multiplatform Content and Services: Multicultural Edition from Horowitz.

"Our data consistently show that multicultural audiences tend to be on the leading edge for advanced technologies and services," said Adriana Waterston, VP of business development for Horowitz Associates, in a statement. "When it comes to alternative TV platforms, multicultural consumers want more choice, not less. Any players in the multicultural space need to deliver what viewers are coming to expect: cross-platform content."

An earlier Horowitz study found that Hispanics and blacks have lower levels of broadband subscriptions than the general population but that these groups are driving new growth in broadband subscriptions. The new study shows that multicultural broadband users are using their high speed connections to access video.

The new study also highlighted the growing importance of these groups for the TV Everywhere initiatives that operators are using to make content available on multiple screens and to strengthen their competitive position against over-the-top video offerings.

While the study found most of the TV viewing still take places on the traditional TV set, with 75% of Hispanics, 70% of Asians, 74% of blacks and 75% of whites reporting that most of their viewing still occurs on the TV, about one quarter of all Asian (24%) and whites (25%) who had multichannel subscriptions said they are considering or might consider cancelling their TV subscription if more of their favorite content is available online.

The potential for cord-cutting was lower among Hispanics and Blacks, with 18% of Hispanic and 13% of black multichannel subs saying they are considering or would consider cutting the cord.