Ericsson predicts 50% of content will be viewed via mobile devices by 2020

Video via smartphone

Swedish communications tech leader Ericsson has revealed that linear and video on demand (VOD) services will be on equal footing in terms of viewership by 2020.

It has claimed that 50% of all viewing will be done on a mobile device—smartphones making up half (25% total) of that number. These findings, part of Ericsson’s eighth annual ConsumerLab TV and Media report, help detail the ongoing shift in where and how consumers watch content.

TV and video viewing rose, with time spent watching up to an all-time high of 30 hours a week (16-19 year-olds watching over 33 hours, more than 10 hours more than in 2010). 60% of viewers overall preferred on-demand viewing over scheduled linear TV viewing—an increase of around 50% since 2010. Smartphone viewership also gained ground, with about 70% of consumers watching via device, double the amount from 2012.

As viewership went up, so did the degree of difficulty for discovering content. With more access to more channels than ever before, the average time spent searching for content increased to almost an hour a day, a 13% increase from last year. Six out of 10 consumers in the study find content discovery as “very important”, whereas 70% want a “universal search for all TV and video.”

VR, with its social and immersive quality, will add a new dimension to discovery and tomorrow’s viewing experience. By 2020, a third of consumers are projected to be VR users. This comes with some challenges: one, close to 55% of consumers who plan to get VR devices would prefer cheaper headsets. Two, the amount of content seems limited to almost half of those potential buyers. A third of them also would want VR bundles provided from their TV providers.

Anders Erlandsson, senior advisor for Ericsson ConsumerLab said he believed VR’s potential createsd a deeper, more personalized and complementary media experience. However, “as consumer expectations for on-demand, mobile and immersive viewing continues to increase, the TV and media industry must focus on delivering highly personalized services in the very best possible quality available."

These findings should help give marketers a solid forecast as distributors, content creators, and networks figure out better ways to create and measure quality content for an audience that’s increasingly on-the-go.

Bennett Bennett

Bennett D. Bennett is a staff writer at The Drum covering agencies, the media landscape, creativity and innovation. An NYC native, MAIP alum and City College of New York grad, Bennett previously was an award-winning copywriter at BBDO New York and lends his unique perspective and voice to The Drum's editorial staff. Previously a member of the Adcolor Advisory Board, he currently sits on the AAF's Mosaic Next-Generation Leadership Council and the 4As Steering Committee.

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