This year, two-thirds of U.S. Internet users, or 147.5 million people, will watch some form of online video content at least once per month, according to eMarketer.
By 2014, the number of U.S. online video viewers will represent 77 percent of Internet users, or 193.1 million people, according to eMarketer's forecasts. This growth will be driven by an expansion in content availability, technology advances and an increasing comfort level with the activity, the firm reports.
"Internet users are content to watch snack-type content at their desks or on the go, but when it comes to curling up with a movie, or even a TV episode, the living room couch is still the venue of choice," said Paul Verna, a senior analyst at eMarketer. "But as more TV sets ship with built-in Internet connectivity and technology providers devise other affordable, easy-to-use solutions for bridging the gap between the computer and the TV, the boundaries will dissolve."
What the boost in online video viewing means for advertising is fairly clear: growth. eMarketer estimates U.S. online video ad spending will jump 48.1 percent in 2010, reaching $1.5 billion. By 2014, U.S. spending on video advertising is expected to reach $5.5 billion.