DVRs now in 44% of U.S. TV households

Thursday, October 13th, 2011 
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Over 60% of Digital Cable Subscribers use VOD Monthly

DURHAM, NH — New consumer research from Leichtman Research Group, Inc. (LRG) found that 44% of TV households in the United States have at least one Digital Video Recorder (DVR), and one-third of DVR households have more than one DVR — representing 14% of all households having multiple DVRs. In 2005, just 8% of all households had a DVR.

In addition, 73% of all digital cable subscribers have ever used Video on-Demand (VOD), with 87% of this group having watched an on-Demand program or movie in the past month. Overall, about 62% of digital cable subscribers used on-Demand in the past month — compared to 52% last year.

Other related findings include:

  • 80% of DVR owners rate the service 8-10 (on a 1-10 scale with 10 being excellent) — compared to 80% last year, and 77% two years ago
  • 62% of cable VOD users rate the service 8-10 — compared to 60% last year, and 55% two years ago
  • 74% of premium on-Demand (POD) users rate VOD 8-10 — compared to 54% of non-POD users
  • 63% of all Netflix subscribers rate the Watch Instantly feature 8-10 (on a 1-10 scale with 10 being an extremely important feature or benefit of the Netflix service) — compared to 48% last year, and 37% two years ago
  • 20% of Netflix subscribers use Watch Instantly daily, and 57% weekly — last year 10% used Watch Instantly daily, and 43% weekly
  • 78% of Watch Instantly users use it to watch movies and TV shows on a TV set
  • 86% of Netflix households subscribe to a multi-channel video service, and 43% with a multi-channel video service subscribe to a premium service — similar to all households in the sample, and similar to Netflix households last year

These findings are based on a survey of over 1,300 households throughout the United States, and are part of LRG’s study, On-Demand TV: A Nationwide Study on VOD and DVRs. This is LRG’s tenth annual study on this topic.

“On-Demand TV viewing in the forms of DVR and VOD, as well as Netflix streaming, have significantly increased in terms of usage and popularity over the past few years,” said Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for Leichtman Research Group, Inc. “Yet these on-Demand TV platforms remain largely complementary to traditional TV services and viewing, with about 90% of all TV viewing in the US still being via live TV.”

On-Demand TV: A Nationwide Study on VOD and DVRs is based on a telephone survey of 1,347 adults age 18+ from throughout the continental US in households with a TV set. The survey was conducted in August-September 2011. The random sample of respondents was distributed to best reflect the demographic and geographic make-up of the US. The overall sample has a statistical margin of error of +/- 2.7%.