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Nielsen Tracks DVR Usage

Among television households with digital-video recorders, more than 78% of viewers who watch recorded broadcast primetime shows play them back within two days, with 84% playing them back within three days, according to an analysis released Thursday by Nielsen Media Research.

Nielsen found in examining playback viewing for the week of Sept. 25 that among viewers age 18-49, 76% played back broadcast network primetime programs within 48 hours.

During the same time period, 84% watched primetime shows they recorded off advertiser-supported cable networks; and 85% viewed time-shifted syndicated shows within two days. By the third day, those percentages rose to 84% for primetime broadcast, 90% for primetime cable and 91% for total syndication.

“The TV landscape is changing rapidly and, as consumers increasingly decide for themselves when to watch their favorite shows, Nielsen will establish new means to track their behavior,”Pat McDonough, Nielsen’s senior vice president of planning and analysis, said in a prepared statement. “This latest analysis allows clients to better understand how DVR playback affects viewing over seven days. It will enable us to work with clients to determine the most appropriate way to incorporate this data into our measurements.”

Among total minutes of primetime programming viewed by households with DVRs within seven days, the percentage that is played back from DVR is: broadcast networks, 41.1%; ad-supported cable, 17.9%; and syndication, 14.1%.