While watching video content, half of online Americans surveyed said they use second screens via another device such as a smartphone or tablet to augment first screen content to access information about the content they're viewing (50%), watch content on other devices during commercials (48%) and follow social media discussions either related or unrelated to the programming (43%). Millennials (ages 18 to 34) are far more likely to engage in second screen behaviors than adults 35-years and older - 71% engage with social media while watching video content (40 percentage points higher than adults 35 and older), and 70% watch content on another device during commercials (32 points higher than adults 35 and older).
While the TV set remains the most-preferred device for viewing most video content, screens on other devices (computers, tablets and smartphones) are preferred collectively for watching streamed content (57%, 13 points higher than TV sets). For most types of video content, millennials are more likely to watch from non-traditional devices (42%) compared to adults 35 and older (22%).
Overwhelmingly, the top reasons consumers purchase TV sets rather than non-traditional content viewing devices are screen size (80%) and picture quality (62%), with cost coming in at a distant third (29%).
Regarding cord cutting, 11% of consumers report having cancelled their service provider subscription in the past year, usually citing alternate options available at a lower cost (27%). Additionally, 21% of consumers report they haven't had a service provider subscription for more than a year, with 32% reporting they did not watch enough TV programming to justify the subscription costs. While traditional pay TV providers including cable, satellite and fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) remain the most-used resources for accessing and consuming content (61%), more consumers are now receiving content through paid video streaming services (46%, a 7 percentage point increase from 2014).