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Indians Spending Over 10 Hours on Their Devices Daily, Adobe Survey Reveals

Online news sources emerged as the second-best method to source and share information for the mobile-friendly Indians

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The headquarters of Adobe Systems in San Jose, California
The headquarters of Adobe Systems in San Jose, California. Wikimedia Commons

Seeking more personalised experiences, Indians are spending over 10 hours on their devices daily, representing the changing content consumption habits, a new Adobe survey revealed on Wednesday.

As part of its “2019 Brand Content Survey”, the software major found that two-third of those surveyed were using two devices at the same time constantly or frequently.

Over 400 million millennials in India choose trustworthy brands that respect their privacy primarily, the findings showed.

“Brands that can strike the right level of personalisation will forge stronger connections with their customers, resulting in brand loyalty and growth,” said Sunder Madakshira, Head, Marketing, Adobe India.

According to the survey, two-thirds of India’s digital users, especially between the 23-49 age group, are comfortable making unplanned purchases from a brand.

Nearly 69 per cent shoppers in the country prefer online marketplaces for purchasing products.

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India made the biggest contribution to the demand for smart feature phones in 2018. Pixabay

While 49 per cent people visit a brand’s website to buy products, 31 per cent people still make purchases via physical stores and 28 per cent Indians use smart speakers and voice assistants to make purchases, the survey noted.

“It is not surprising that online review sites, social media networking sites and video channels were voted as critical cogs of pre and post purchase interactions, especially in the younger age groups,” added Madakshira.

Nearly 95 per cent of the people between the 18-34 age group trust Google-owned YouTube the most, while middle-aged and elderly people rely more on Facebook.

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India has nearly 300 million Facebook users and over 265 million YouTube users.

Online news sources emerged as the second-best method to source and share information for the mobile-friendly Indians. (IANS)

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Surfeit of Choices and Too Many Alternate Options of Engagement Gradually Eating into Time Spent before Box

Broadcast TV now faces a media landscape which its once prime position is being threatened

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Time, Box, Indians
A surfeit of choices and too many alternate options of engagement are gradually eating into the time spent before the box. Pixabay

A surfeit of choices and too many alternate options of engagement are gradually eating into the time spent before the box. Although Indians still spend nearly four hours a day watching TV, the shift to alternate screens is happening fast. Broadcast TV now faces a media landscape which its once prime position is being threatened. A shift in socio-cultural preferences is igniting this change in viewing habits. Cord cutting, as the phenomenon of actually giving up your Cable or Satellite connection which is quite apparent in markets like the US, is now slowly making an entry into Indian homes. I know many people who now access all their news and entertainment via Internet and on demand is becoming more dynamic and democratic than ever before. As broadcasters, we can propagate programmes online and on demand, and if we can catch the viewers attention, they will be discussed and recommended by thousands of people on social networks in real time, becoming instantly accessible by new viewers.

Globally, there is a trend where many large telecom firms like AT&T, Comcast, Singtel, Airtel and Jio are acquiring media (and entertainment) companies — and tech companies like Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook, Netflix, Sony (they acquired Columbia three decades ago) are diversifying into content. A handful of entertainment giants like Disney, Bertelsmann, Discovery and Viacom are still in the race of eyeballs. Of course, there are hundreds of local and regional players around the world and some of them like Times Group in India are of a significant size. Besides, several OTT platforms/services are still out there pretty much panning the proverbial gold. Where do simple vanilla broadcasters fit in the everchanging world of tomorrow, specially in India with its diverse audience of a billion plus is consuming more inexpensive data i.e. information and entertainment than even highly developed markets like US Europe.

Three billion viewers all over the globe are not going to junk their TV connections in a hurry but within the next four or five years, half of them will switch to streaming on demand services. Unfortunately, technology and regulators worldwide are adding to the woes of conventional TV networks. Long-form entertainment is still very much in broadcasters’ domain. The real threat is the changing lifestyle and habits of today’s generation. Increasingly, we are seeing the success of made for streaming films, dramas and documentaries etc are stealing audiences. With larger budgets, courtesy deeper pockets even the talent is attracted towards the tech turned media conglomerates and OTTs . There is not only a shift in consumers but purveyors of media and entertainment away from linear TV. Gaming and short form content is another magnet pulling millions apart from the box. Multiple media across multiple devices is the new normal. From archetypical family viewing home entertainment is getting individual, interactive and instant. Streaming audio/video and personalised TV with a smorgasbord of different formats both genres and duration is the way forward for sure.

Time, Box, Indians
Although Indians still spend nearly four hours a day watching TV, the shift to alternate screens is happening fast. Pixabay

Content, a term used for anything from a tweet to a thesis, news to exposes, a song to a music channel, a short video clip to a library of films is hardly a differentiator in most cases. Even exclusive coverage major sporting events, political upheavals, wars, disasters or triumphs of the human spirit can get you only fleeting audience. Nothing is sticky anymore. Regurgitating of the same story in different formats is hardly compelling. One reason that broadcasters will lose this battle is their inability to innovate their programming. A cookie cutter approach where formatted shows are universally produced and screened are now reaching a fatigue level. Every successful show or programme is replicated. More of the same works to a large extent and it has in case of television but now it’s coming to the end of the course. After a point familiarity breeds contempt.

Also Read- Apple Needs to Sell More Devices and Create More Desi Content to Bring More People into Its Ecosystem

In fact, so far OTTs have had successes which had either a different look and feel than existing broadcast shows or went into darker areas. However, programmers and creators must be wary of falling in a similar trap as their predecessor. If everyone is going to rely on a similar matrix, albeit in a broader spectrum of genres, only the best will survive. I believe that the present average of 4 hours a day of tele viewing is about the optimum to sustain. Unlike appointment TV which has a fixed point chart and hence limited programming options online watching streamed or stored has virtually no limitations of choice. The next enhancement for consumer will be virtual reality and immersive TV and customisation. The coming five years is festival time for Indians as we will be offered a large array of content by different platforms. Creative fraternity needs to understand the new fragmented and attention deficit audience. It’s broadcasters who have to begin thinking of a strategy for the next decade or face extinction. (IANS)