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Youth Ditches TV for Digital

By February 6, 2015 No Comments

The latest TV viewing figures are in, and with more than three years’ worth of data, there’s no denying a steady decline in traditional TV viewing by 18-24 year olds according to Nielsen. Youth as a whole are watching less TV compared to three years ago, and they watch fewer hours compared to older Americans.


The weekly average TV time for 18-24 year olds has dropped for the past ten quarters. Compared to Q4 2011, TV screen time has declined by eight hours from 25.5 hours weekly to 17.5 hours. Digital screen time (PCs, laptops and tablets) has increased by one hour, from almost 4 hours per week to almost 5 hours per week. It should be noted that TV “screen time” includes any content viewed on a TV screen regardless of the source, and thus includes online sources such as Netflix and YouTube.


There’s a dramatic difference in TV time for 18-24 year olds even when compared to the next age group, 25-34 year olds. The 25-34 year olds watch 6.5 hours more TV weekly than 18-24 year olds. But the 25-34 year olds also spend one hour more on the internet per week, and 35-39 year olds spend one hour more than 25-34 year olds. So it appears internet time is increasing for everyone.