November 30, 2015

Nielsen Releases The U.S. Digital Consumer Report (February 2014)

Direct to The U.S. Digital Consumer Report (February 2014)

From Nielsen:

The number of digital devices and platforms available to today’s consumers has exploded in recent years. As a result, today’s consumer is more connected than ever, with more access to and deeper engagement with content and brands. And these changes are contributing to the media revolution and blurring traditional media definitions.

Americans now own four digital devices on average, and the average U.S. consumer spends 60 hours a week consuming content across devices. And a majority of U.S. households now own high-definition televisions (HDTVs), Internet-connected computers and smartphones. In addition to more devices, consumers also have more choices for how and when they access content.

As a result, consumption habits are changing. The rapid adoption of a second screen has transformed the traditional TV viewing experience, with consumers using smartphones and tablets in ways that are natural extensions of the programming they watch. And social media usage is now standard practice in our daily lives—almost half (47%) of smartphone owners visit social networks every day.

U.S. Digital Consumer Report Highlights

General device ownership and media consumption:

Americans on average now own four digital devices. The majority of U.S. households now own high-definition televisions (83%), Internet-connected computers (80%) and smartphones (65%). Nearly half also own digital video recorders (49%) and gaming consoles (46%).

Over the past year, on average, consumers have increased their monthly time spent viewing time-shifted TV content by almost two hours. Additionally over the past year, consumers have increased the average monthly time spent using the browser and/or apps on their smartphones by nearly 10 hours, ranking second only to live television in the amount of time spent on media consumption activities.

Second-screen activities:

Eighty-four percent of smartphone and tablet owners say they use their devices as second-screens while watching TV at the same time. In addition to multi-tasking, consumers are using smartphones and tablets in ways that are natural extensions of the programming they watch, like looking up information about the characters and plot lines, or researching and purchasing products and services advertised just minutes before.

Tablet owners are more likely to use their devices as a second screen for all of the activities we looked at (with the exception of email/texting friends about the program).

Social media activities:

Today’s constantly connected consumer is active using social media anywhere they go. Nearly two-thirds (64%) of overall social media users say they use social media sites at least once a day via their computer, and almost half (47%) of smartphone owners visit social networks every day.

A surprising 40 percent of young adults ages 18-24 use social media in the bathroom, and more than half (56%) of adults ages 25-34 use social media at work.

Hispanic connected consumers:

Latinos spend more time than the average U.S. consumer viewing video on digital devices, with the average Latino spending more than eight hours watching online video each month, over 90 minutes longer than the U.S. Average.

Hispanics are adopting smartphones at a higher rate than any other demographic group: nearly three in four Latinos own smartphones (72%). Half (49%) of Hispanic respondent said that planned to upgrade/replace their smartphones in the next six months.

Download the Full Text Report (28 pages; PDF)
Many charts and graphs.

Gary Price About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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