Watching Television, With or Without a TV

It’s not that young adults don’t watch TV content. It’s that they don’t necessarily watch it on a TV set. A Zogby International poll, fielded last month, indicates how 18-29-year-olds prefer to do their viewing.

Thirty-percent said they prefer to watch DVR-recorded content, slightly exceeding the 29 percent whose favorite method is to watch live TV. Watching on the Internet via a third party like Hulu was the choice of 12 percent. Nine percent said they prefer to watch on-demand content via cable or satellite, and the same number cited watching on the Internet via a special connection like a Netflix live stream or Xbox.

The 18-29s’ behavior does not fully match their preferences, though. When asked to identify their most frequent way of watching TV content, a large plurality cited live TV (42 percent), with DVR-recorded TV a distant second (26 percent).

Among adults in general, 47 percent of respondents prefer to watch live TV, and 59 percent said that’s how they watch most often. Twenty-seven percent prefer to watch DVR-recorded TV, and 20 percent watch that way most often.