How Americans consumed media in 2012

While the companies at CES show off all of their new media consumption toys, Neilsen looks back on how Americans consumed media in 2012

cat_watching_tv-600x450_0.jpgflickr/Raelene G
How did you consume media in 2012?

It seems that just about everyone is either attending the Consumer Electronics show in Las Vegas this week or talking, writing, and tweeting about it. The whole point of CES, of course, is for consumer electronics manufacturers to show us the Next Big Thing that we SIMPLY MUST HAVE. From waterproof smartphones to tablet-controlled helicopters to smartforks that will keep you thin there’s no shortage of eye-catching, purchasing-inducing, debt-increasing products for us lemmings to rush out and buy later this year. I mean, really, who doesn’t need an Android powered oven?

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Intelligent kitchenware notwithstanding, most of the products at CES revolve around consuming media.  As we gaze upon all the awesome media-consuming goodies we’re going to want to get soon, this seems like a good time to review how we use all of the media-consumption products we already have.

The good folks at Neilsen came out this week with their State of the Media: U.S. Consumer Usage Report for 2012, which is really a compilation of findings from studies and reports they released throughout the year. It’s a nice summary of how we use all of these tools and toys to consumer media.

Looking it over, there are few stats that jumped out at me for various reasons:

119 million people live in homes with four or more televisions. This made me laugh condescendingly at those mindless saps - until I counted the TVs in my house and came up with five. But hey, only two are HD and one is black-and-white!

People watch an average of a little over six days of traditional TV each month vs. a little over one day per month of using the Internet on a computer. This surprised me since I rarely watch TV without having my laptop in my lap, and I spend lots of time on the Internet away from the TV.

More people still have VCRs (55%) than DVRs (47%). Seriously? Even my 70-something mom has ditched the VCR for a DVR.

Women spend more time than men watching traditional TV. Oh really? Take THAT, you ladies who are always giving us guys grief for watching too much TV.

Men spend more time than women watching video on the Internet. Oh, er, uh, never mind that previous comment, ladies.

Making phone calls is only the third most popular use of mobile devices, after texting and social networks. It’s almost surprising that actually making calls is this high on the list.

When it comes to buying a tablet, people value trusted brand first, then screen size. So, size doesn’t matter. Or, maybe it does. Sort of.

Do Neilsen’s findings jibe with how you consume media on your devices? Let us know in the comments.

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