While tablet penetration and use is still dwarfed by smartphone numbers, a number of recent studies are suggesting that tablets are having a greater impact.
CommScore and the Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement (CIMM) released a study of some 10,000 viewers and found that 11% of TV viewers watched TV only through the Web or some mobile device. Another 17% said they watched TV on regular TV sets as well as through the Web or mobile devices. That left 72% who reported only watching TV on regular sets.
Still, the TV-only set wasn't always only watching TV. The study found that 61% of TV viewers used the internet while watching TV (29% were on Facebook). What seems most interesting was that a substantial number of viewers of some networks reported checking out the network website and viewing online videos from the site while watching the network's regular programming on their TVs.
"For one of the networks, 25 percent of consumers who used the Internet concurrently while watching the network on TV were visiting the network website and online video. For the other network, more than 10 percent were using the network's own websites and online video," CIMM wrote in its report, titled "How Multi-Screen Consumers are Changing Media Dynamics."
The study also found that the those watching online videos on network sites and watching programs on mobile devices tended to be the most engaged, and most loyal, viewers of media brands. Online video users watched more TV than TV only audiences for 7 of 10 TV brands examined (an average of 25% more minutes of TV viewing). The study also found that this higher level of use occurred in the various brand's key demographics. For these networks, at least, a multi-screen focus is a strong positive.
Another CommScore report tracking mobile and tablet use through April 2012, 25% of smart phone users reported also using tablets.
“Tablets are one of the most rapidly adopted consumer technologies in history and are poised to fundamentally disrupt the way people engage with the digital world both on-the-go and perhaps most notably, in the home,” said Mark Donovan, comScore SVP, mobile.
The report also found that tablet users were about three times as likely to watch videos on their tablets as smartphone users, and 10% reported viewing video content daily. Tablet penetration reached 16.5% of mobile phone users in April. The report found some minor demographic differences between smartphone users and tablet users: tablet owners skewed older, and towards upper-income families.
eMarketer is predicting that tablet use in the U.S. will double this year, approaching 70 million tablet users in the U.S. by the end of 2012. That would be almost 30% of Internet users. By 2015, they expect that half of U.S. internet users will have and use tablets.
ABI Research's tracking of tablet sales found the Apple iPad maintaining its market leadership, accounting for 11.8 million of the total of 18.2 million tablets shipped in the first quarter of 2012. Those numbers were up 185% compared to the first quarter of 2011. Amazon's Kindle Fire sales dropped 80% from 2011 holiday season levels, dropping it behind second-place Samsung, which shipped 1.1 million media tablets.
InMobi reported that tablet ad impressions across its mobile advertising network is growing at a rate twice that of smartphones. Among tablets, Apple's iPad continues to dominate, accounting for 70.8% of tablet impressions in the first quarter of 2012. Still, that amounted to a decline of about 10% from the previous quarter. Amazon's Kindle contributed significantly to that decline, with 9.2% of ad impressions in its first full quarter of availability - a level of use that led all Android devices.
The rise of mobile is catching the attention of marketing executives. A survey by BrightRoll found that almost two-thirds reported that their marketing plans (and expenditures) would include smartphones, and half indicated that their plans included targeting tablets. Almost a third expected online video advertising would be the fastest growing advertising sector in terms of revenues. (eMarketer expects a 40% increase in video ad revenues this year, to $3.1 billion).
64% of advertisers said that online video is an equally or more effective medium than TV. Respondents overwhelmingly selected targeting -- 43% -- as what their clients deem the most valuable aspect of online video, followed by reach: 28%.
Sources - CommScore: 11% of viewers only use Web and mobile devices to watch TV programming, FierceCable
Tablet Usage Explodes, Changes Digital Habits, Online Media Daily
U.S. Tablet Users Double to 70 million in 2012, Online Media Daily
iPad Still on Fire While Kindle Smoulders, Mobile Marketing Daily
InMobi: Table ad impressions growing twice as fast as smartphones, FierceMobileContent
Online Video Grabs More Ad Dollars, Marketers Favor Mobile Platforms, Online Media Daily