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Are Kiwis ahead of the curve with digital devices?

11 Jul 2014

While New Zealander’s love affair with television endures, TV sets alone are no longer enough to satisfy Kiwis appetite for content.

As a result of the growing demand, Kiwi tech habits are driving the growth of online media and ‘screen-stacking’ - otherwise known as the use of multiple digital devices at the same time.

According to the TNS Connected Life 2014 survey of over 55,000 internet users worldwide, ‘screen-stacking’ is becoming prevalent globally.

The TNS survey found that almost half of people (48%) globally who watch TV in the evening simultaneously engage in other digital activities, such as using social media, checking their emails or shopping online.

In New Zealand, over half of Kiwis are using more than one screen when watching TV in the evening (55%), and the trend is similar in Australia, where 50 percent of consumers take part in ‘screen-stacking’.

In comparison, within APAC Japanese internet users ‘screen-stack’ at the highest level of 79 percent, while Chinese defy the trend, with only 37 percent of internet users partaking.

Multi-device ownership is fuelling the rise of the multi-screening or ‘screen-stacking’. New Zealanders now own approximately five digital devices each - similar to Australia, Japan, Germany and the UK. Growing demand for TV and video content on-the-go is also contributing to the trend.

The desire to access favourite TV shows at all hours of the day is also driving online TV usage, which extends access to them with around 17 percent of Kiwis nationwide are heading online to watch videos.

This relates to the trends picked up globally, as one quarter (25%) of the global internet users now watch content on a PC, laptop, tablet or mobile daily.

“In a world where multi-tasking is the norm, the context in which we watch TV is rapidly changing - it isn’t just on the sofa at home with no other digital distractions around us," says David Thomas, TNS New Zealand Director.
"It is not surprising that we are seeing such a pronounced trend in New Zealand towards ‘screen-stacking’ - the appetite for online content is significant and growing all the time.”

Many of the big global media companies are already taking advantage of growing online viewing trends, offering on-demand services such as BBC iPlayer, Hulu or HBO GO, which allow people to access premium content wherever they are through their phones or tablets.

In New Zealand, media companies are also recognising this trend, offering online content such as TV On-demand by TVNZ and Sky Go.

“Many people around the world are still wedded to their TV sets, particularly when they are with their families and friends and 69 percent of Kiwis still tune in to the box daily," Thomas adds.

"But while traditional TV still has its role to play, advertisers must adapt to our changing viewing habits.

"Online devices are offering more ways to access TV and video content, meaning that brands will need to adopt a more integrated online approach in order to engage consumers.

"There’s a real opportunity for those that understand how to really integrate their activity in our increasingly connected world."

Are Kiwis ahead of the curve with digital devices? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below

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