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Nielsen: Americans watch TV at record levels

Nielsen Media Research reported the average American home watched more television the past TV season vs. any previous season. During the 2004-05 TV season (which started September 20, 2004 and just ended September 18, 2005), the average household in the U.S. tuned into television an average of 8 hours and 11 minutes per day. This is 2.7% higher than the previous season, 12.5% higher than 10 years ago, and the highest levels ever reported since television viewing was first measured by Nielsen Media Research in the 1950's. During the Sept 2004-Sept 2005 season, the average person watched television 4 hours and 32 minutes each day, the highest level in 15 years (See Table 1). Household tuning levels going back to the 1950's can be downloaded at the following link: [http://www.nielsenmedia.com/newsreleases/2005/TVviewinglevels.xls].

The Primetime daypart during the 2004-05 season saw a slight increase in viewing from the previous season (see Table 2).

This overall upward trend in audience increases appears to be consistent heading into the new television season. For example, viewing levels during Summer 2005 (June-Aug 2005) were up slightly compared to last summer (see Table 3). Also, the primetime viewing audience for Premiere Week (9/19/05 - 9/25/05) of the 2005-06 TV season was considerably higher than for Premiere Week 2004 (9/20/04-9/26/04). Each night of Premiere Week 2005 saw increases compared to last, while Sunday and Monday continued to be the most viewed nights of the week with 11.5 million and 11.6 million viewers respectively (see Table 4).

Table 1
Average Hours: Minutes Tuned into TV
Per 24 Hour Period

Broadcast Year

(Sept-Sept)

Homes

Avg Hours: Minutes

Per Day

Persons 2+

Avg Hours: Minutes

Per Day

2004 - 2005

8:11

4:32

2003 - 2004

8:01

4:25

2002 - 2003

7.55

4.25

2001 - 2002

7.42

4.18

2000 - 2001

7.39

4.15

1999 - 2000

7.31

4.06

1998 - 1999

7.24

4.00

1997 - 1998

7.15

3.58

1996 - 1997

7.12

3.56

1995 - 1996

7.15

3.59

1994 - 1995

7.15

4.02

1993 - 1994

7.16

4.03

1992 - 1993

7.12

4.06

1991 - 1992

7.05

4.06



Table 2

Broadcast Year

(Sept-Sept)

Homes

Avg Hours: Minutes

Primetime

Persons 2+

Avg Hours: Minutes

Primetime

2004 - 2005

1:53

1:11

2003 - 2004

1:52

1:10

2002 - 2003

1:52

1:10

2001 - 2002

1:51

1:10

2000 - 2001

1:52

1:10

1999 - 2000

1:51

1:09

1998 - 1999

1:50

1:08

1997 - 1998

1:49

1:08

1996 - 1997

1:49

1:08

1995 - 1996

1:50

1:09

1994 - 1995

1:50

1:10

1993 - 1994

1:51

1:11

1992 - 1993

1:50

1:11

1991 - 1992

1:50

1:12



Average Hours: Minutes Tuned into TV
During Primetime Each Day

Table 3
Primetime Persons and Household Tuning Levels
Summer 2005 vs Summer 2004

Homes

Using TV %

# of Homes

Using TV (000)

Persons

Using TV %

# of Persons

Using TV (000)

SUMMER 2005

 

 

 

 

06/01/2005-08/31/2005

prime

55.8

61143

34.1

94,738

 

 

 

 

 

SUMMER 2004

06/01/2004-08/31/2004

prime

55.6

60245

34.0

93,729

Year to Year % increase

+0.4%

+1.5%

+0.3%

+1.1%



Table 4
Primetime Persons and Household Tuning Levels
Premiere Week 2005 vs Premiere Week 2004

 

 

Homes

Using TV %

# of Homes

Using TV (000)

Persons

Using TV %

# of Persons

Using TV (000)

 

 

PREMIERE WEEK 2005

 

 

 

 

 

MON  09/19/2005

prime

66.3

73097

41.3

115834

TUE  09/20/2005

prime

64.4

70980

39.6

111027

WED  09/21/2005

prime

64.5

71102

39.6

111075

THU  09/22/2005

prime

64.4

70990

40.0

112293

FRI  09/23/2005

prime

57.6

63503

35.3

99042

SAT  09/24/2005

prime

55.0

60640

34.0

95381

SUN  09/25/2005

prime

64.6

71166

41.4

116219

TOTAL - 7 DAY AVERAGE

prime

62.5

68891

38.9

109038

PREMIERE WEEK 2004

MON  09/20/2004

prime

64.7

70864

39.2

108886

TUE  09/21/2004

prime

62.2

68136

37.9

105435

WED  09/22/2004

prime

62.5

68456

37.7

104780

THU  09/23/2004

prime

62.6

68593

38.4

106814

FRI  09/24/2004

prime

55.0

60233

33.1

91891

SAT  09/25/2004

prime

53.4

58568

32.3

89731

SUN  09/26/2004

prime

62.0

67931

39.0

108395

TOTAL - 7 DAY AVERAGE

prime

60.4

66194

36.9

102554

Year to Year % increase

+3.5%

+4.1%

+5.4%

+6.3%






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