Survey: Traditional TV viewing heading for a fall

Global numbers will drop, according to ZenithOptimedia, while mobile devices will boom

Linear TV viewing figures are set to drop worldwide for the first time next year, with online video consumption set to rise by 23.3% in 2015, according to a report by ZenithOptimedia.

The Publicis Groupe-owned media agency's Online Video Forecasts report found that the market will expand by a further 19.8% in 2016.

ZenithOptimedia also claims the number of linear TV viewers will begin to decline in 2016 for the first time, after a peak this year. It said the number will rise to 3.1% in 2015, then drop by 1.9%, and then 0.9% in 2017.

The number of people watching videos on mobile devices is expected to grow by 43.9% in 2015 and 34.8% in 2016.

On non-mobile devices the research said that video consumption will rise by 9.5% this year and by 6.5% in 2016.

In terms of time spent on mobile, ZenithOptimedia said that it is becoming the main platform for viewing online video.

In 2012 the devices accounted for 22.9% of time spent watching online video, globally. In 2014, this increased to 40.1%. ZenithOptimedia expects viewing time to reach 52.7 next year, and 58.1% in 2016.

It means that global online video adspend is also rising "rapidly." The market had an 8.8% share of the total internet adspend in 2012. Last year this rose to 10.2% and it is predicted to increase by 12.8%.

Online video is also the fastest growing sector in internet advertising. The report forecast it to grow by 28.9 per cent to $16.1 billion globally in 2015, 22.5% in 2016 and 19.7% in 2017 to $23.7 billion.

According to Mark Waugh, the global managing director at Newcast, the branded content arm at ZenithOptimedia, "Consumers all around the world are rapidly embracing online video, because it offers them a near limitless array of engrossing content.

"Some of the keenest users are the young, affluent viewers who are hardest to reach on television.

"Brands are finding online video a particularly effective way to reach these valuable audiences, not just with advertising, but also with branded content; content that can inform or entertain consumers in a deeper and richer way than is possible with short, interruptive ads."

This article first appeared on

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