TV Everywhere isn’t perfect as authentications challenges remain and the amount of programming offered continues to be fragmented, but usage of those services is clearly on the rise, the Adobe Digital Index found in its Video Benchmark Report for the first quarter of 2014. TV Everywhere content consumption surged 246% versus the prior-year period, a figure that excludes data from the Sochi Olympics, which was a “major” TVE event during the first quarter, ADI said.
ADI’s report also found that the number of unique visitors per month for TVE rose 157% year-over-year, and quarter-over-quarter across “all access points,” or connected devices such as tablets, PCs, smartphones and gaming consoles. ADI’s findings are based on aggregated and anonymous data across 250 pay-TV providers and 160 TV Everywhere sites and apps, sampling from TV Everywhere authentications and 151 billion total online video starts.
ADI also estimated that 21% of pay-TV homes in the U.S. accessed TVE content in Q1, versus 16% six months earlier. Additionally, 95 TV channels now power more than 160 TVE sites and apps in the U.S., 30 more than half a year earlier.
“More than one fifth of all pay-TV households in the U.S. now watch TV online across screens,” said Jeremy Helfand, vice president, Primetime, Adobe, in a statement. “With rapidly rising consumer expectations for TV across devices, the TV industry is moving through a rapid transformation and finding new ways to bring TV to whatever screen audiences want to watch.”
Among device categories, ADI said the new Xbox One and PlayStation 4 consoles and OTT media players like the Apple TV “are likely drivers of growth,” as devices in that combined category saw an uptick in video starts of 123%, well ahead of video start growth among tablets and smartphones.
Game consoles and those OTT devices also saw the strongest market share growth, with a 539% increase, ADI’s report found. Additionally, iOS apps for the first time surpassed browsers as the most popular access point for TV Everywhere content, achieving a 43% market share.