More Than Half of Smartphone Users Stream Video Content on Their Device

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Usage of TV-connected devices is also on the rise, as more consumers stream content at home and on the go, according to NPD

Access to content is becoming a key differentiator for carriers, in addition to unlimited data plans that allow consumers to watch OTT video at home and on the go with peace of mind.

According to global information provider, The NPD Group, 57 percent of all U.S. smartphone users access video content via an app at least once a month, with iOS users more likely than Android users to access video content, 66 percent versus 49 percent, respectively. Streaming video is the number one driver of cellular and Wi-Fi data consumption on mobile and fixed networks, accounting for 78 percent of the total data used by smartphone owners, with streaming video apps like YouTube and Netflix driving the greatest data demands.

YouTube is the top ranking video app for both iOS and Android users, with 45 percent of smartphone users accessing the app on a monthly basis, as stated in the latest Smartphone and Tablet Usage report from NPD’s Connected Intelligence. Netflix has the second highest usage rate with 18 percent of users launching the app monthly. Notably, iOS smartphone users are much more likely to access Netflix, with nearly a quarter of them using this app within a given month, compared to only 10 percent of Android users.

“Smartphone penetration is continuing to grow and the battle among mobile carriers to retain current subscribers, as well as grow their base is fierce,” noted Brad Akyuz, director, industry analyst for NPD’s Connected Intelligence. “Access to content is becoming a key differentiator for carriers, in addition to unlimited data plans that allow consumers to watch OTT video at home and on the go with peace of mind. As the installed base of smartphones with large displays grows, we expect mobile video data consumption will do the same.”

In addition to growing mobile video consumption, consumers are also looking to their TV-connected devices to stream content. According to the Application and Convergence report from NPD’s Connected Intelligence, consumers that use TV-connected devices to stream video grew by five percentage points versus the same timeframe a year prior (Q2 2017 vs. Q2 2016). In total, 57 million U.S. households own a TV-connected device, up from 50 million year-ago, which is driving an increase in usage across the top video streaming services.

“Through partnerships with content providers like Netflix and DIRECTV, mobile carriers are extending their reach into the consumer’s living room,” said John Buffone, executive director, industry analyst, NPD Connected Intelligence. “As mobile carriers continue to bundle access to content and remove barriers, such as data limitations, video usage both at home and on the go will continue to thrive.”

*TV-connected devices include streaming media players, video game consoles, Blu-ray Disc Players and connected TVs that are connected to the internet.

The NPD Group Connected Intelligence Smartphone and Tablet Usage report provides a quarterly view of consumer smartphone and tablet behavior (Q2 2017). The report leverages an on-device and VPN-based metering solution ("Smart Meter") to provide a view of actual application and data consumption, allowing customers to view usage across a number of different metrics.

The results of the NPD Group Connected Intelligence Application & Convergence report are based on consumer panel research that reached 5,355 U.S. consumers, aged 18+ from diverse regions and demographical backgrounds. They reported on their usage of desktops/laptops, connected TVs, tablets, and smartphones. This survey was fielded from April 28 through May 16, 2017. Trend is compared to the Q2 2016 survey, which fielded during a similar period last year.

About Connected Intelligence
Connected Intelligence provides competitive intelligence and insight on the rapidly evolving consumer’s connected environment. The service focuses on the three core components of the connected market: the device, the broadband access that provides the connectivity and the content that drives consumer behavior. These three pillars of the connected ecosystem are analyzed through a comprehensive review of what is available, adopted, and consumed by the customer, as well as reviewing how the market will evolve over time and what the various vendors can do to best position themselves in this evolving market. For more information:

About The NPD Group, Inc.
NPD is the leading global provider of market information and business solutions covering brick-and-mortar, e-commerce, and emerging channels in more than 20 industries. We combine our unique data assets with analytic solutions to help our clients measure performance, predict trends, and improve results, advising them to help drive successful growth. Practice areas include apparel, appliances, automotive, beauty, books, consumer electronics, e-commerce, entertainment, fashion accessories, food consumption, foodservice, footwear, home, juvenile products, mobile, office supplies, retail, sports, technology, toys, travel retail, games, and watches / jewelry. For more information, visit Follow us on Twitter: @npdgroup.

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Megan Scott
The NPD Group
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