The Tablet: Not Just for Kids Anymore

New Survey: Older viewers watching TV and movies on tablets triples while younger viewership plateaus

BOSTON--()--The number of older viewers watching TV shows and movies weekly on tablets has skyrocketed in the last year while usage among tablet owners under 45 has plateaued, according to an annual survey of consumer video viewing habits conducted by Altman Vilandrie & Company and Research Now.

The survey showed tablet owners 55 and older who watch TV and movies weekly on tablets jumped from 11% last year to 19% in 2012, while owners in the 45-54 range also saw large percentage gains (15% to 24%). The actual number all of older viewers (tablet and non-tablet owners) watching TV shows and movies weekly on tablets more than tripled since last year, though that group is still a small percentage of total tablet TV and movie viewers. Meanwhile, the tablet viewing habits of owners 44 and younger were virtually unchanged over the past year.

“While it may not make parents seem any cooler, older consumers more and more are adopting their kids’ viewing habits,” said Altman Vilandrie & Company Director Jonathan Hurd, who oversaw the survey. “The biggest surprise in this year’s survey is how often older tablet owners are watching television shows or movies on their tablets. Tablets and other devices are transforming how, when and where all of us watch television.”

Even when viewers tune in to a traditional TV set, their tablets are often next to them on the couch. The survey shows that 47% of 18- to 34-year-old tablet owners multitask with their tablet at least half of the time while watching TV. Hurd noted that the TV networks and cable providers that integrate their TV services with Internet and social media options will have an advantage in attracting and retaining these customers.

Other key findings of the survey include:

  • Younger consumers’ online viewing continues to rise sharply. Seventy-five percent of 18-24 year olds watch online TV shows or movies weekly, up from 62% last year.
  • News and TV comedies are the top choices for what people watch online, cited by 50% and 40% of online watchers respectively.
  • Among those keeping their cable TV subscriptions, the desire to watch live news (77%), new TV shows (66%) and live sports (58%) were the main reasons given.

The survey, conducted by Altman Vilandrie since 2010, also used discrete choice analysis to quantify consumers’ interest in add-on video and TV programming services. Altman Vilandrie & Company has been using the survey results to explore optimal pricing models for online video.

Research Now fielded the online survey with more than 3,300 U.S. consumers in July and August. For details about further research topics and more information about the study, contact Jonathan Hurd at

About Altman Vilandrie & Company

Altman Vilandrie & Company is a strategy consulting group that focuses on the communications, media, clean tech and related technology and investor sectors. The company’s consultants are experienced in strategy, marketing, finance, M&A, technology, regulatory and operations disciplines. Based in Boston, with offices in New York City and San Francisco, Altman Vilandrie & Company enables clients to seize new opportunities, navigate mounting challenges, improve business performance, and increase investor value within complex and converging industries.

Ninety percent of the boutique firm’s operator clients are large- to mid-cap companies including service providers, content creators and aggregators, and equipment and software developers. Altman Vilandrie & Company’s financial clients include many of the largest and most prominent investors in the communications, media and related technology markets. To learn more visit

About Research Now

Research Now, the leading digital data collection provider, powers market research insights. We enable companies to listen to and interact with the world’s consumers and business professionals through online panels, as well as mobile, digital and social media technologies. Our team operates in 24 offices globally and is recognized as the market research industry’s leader in client satisfaction. We foster a socially responsible culture by empowering our employees to give back. To find out more or begin a conversation with us, visit


Matter Communications for Altman Vilandrie & Company
Cort Boulanger, 339-222-2442

Release Summary

Annual survey of consumer video viewing habits conducted by Altman Vilandrie & Co. and Research Now finds older viewers watching TV and movies on tablets triples, while younger viewership plateaus.


Matter Communications for Altman Vilandrie & Company
Cort Boulanger, 339-222-2442