Even as New Entertainment Options Enter the Fray, The NPD Group Reports We’re Still Mostly a Nation of Couch Potatoes

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Entertainment Trends in America” update reveals that 8 in 10 Americans watch an average of 10 hours of TV per week

There’s a perception that families spending time in front of a glowing TV hearth has been replaced by glowing laptop or iPod displays. And while that’s true for some families, TV remains the top entertainment choice by far in the United States.

According to the latest update to the “Entertainment Trends in America” consumer tracking surveys conducted by The NPD Group, a leading market research company, even with activities like Twitter and social networking added to the mix of communication and entertainment options, America is still a nation of couch potatoes. When consumers were asked how many leisure-time hours in the past week they spent on particular entertainment activities, watching television was the most popular: 81 percent of respondents watched an average of 10 hours of television programming (not including feature films) per week.

“There’s a perception that families spending time in front of a glowing TV hearth has been replaced by glowing laptop or iPod displays,” said Russ Crupnick, entertainment industry analyst for NPD. “And while that’s true for some families, TV remains the top entertainment choice by far in the United States.”

Though iPods and other MP3 players have become ubiquitous, 78 percent of Americans still listened to traditional AM/FM radio, spending over five hours per week doing so, and 60 percent listened to music on a CD. Instant messaging and emailing were also extremely popular; 70 percent of Americans took part in those activities, on average, 4 hours per week. Nearly half of consumers (47 percent) visited social networking sites, spending an average of 5 hours on that activity; and although Twitter only recently entered the entertainment fray, 11 percent of respondents reported tweeting an average of three hours per week.

According to “Entertainment Trends in America,” the top five leisure-time activities, based on the percentage of U.S. consumers who took part in each activity in the prior week, is as follows:

1.    Watch TV show/sports/news (excluding movies): 81%    
2.    Listen to music on traditional AM/FM radio (not satellite): 78%
3.    Instant-messaging or e-mailing: 70%
4.    Listen to music on a CD: 60%
5.    Watch a movie on TV (excluding Pay-Per-View and Video on Demand): 58%

Data note: Information in this press release was derived from The NPD Group’s “Entertainment Trends in America” consumer survey tracking update. The survey was fielded to members of NPD’s online panel in August 2009. The final report is based on 10,281 completed responses from U.S. consumers. Final survey data was weighted to represent US population of individuals (age 13 and older). All data was tested for statistical significance at 95 percent confidence level.

About The NPD Group, Inc.
The NPD Group is the leading provider of reliable and comprehensive consumer and retail information for a wide range of industries. Today, more than 1,700 manufacturers, retailers, and service companies rely on NPD to help them drive critical business decisions at the global, national, and local market levels. NPD helps our clients to identify new business opportunities and guide product development, marketing, sales, merchandising, and other functions. Information is available for the following industry sectors: automotive, beauty, commercial technology, consumer technology, entertainment, fashion, food and beverage, foodservice, home, office supplies, software, sports, toys, and wireless. For more information, contact us, visit http://www.npd.com/ or follow us on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/npdgroup .

Press Contact:
Lee Graham
lee(at)leegraham.biz
212-333-4983

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