UK goes gaga for on-demand TV

Britain leads the world when it comes to watching TV online, according to research.

13 Dec 2012


Britain leads the world when it comes to watching TV online, according to research.


More people watch on-demand content every week in Britain than in any other major country, Ofcom's International Communications Market Report revealed.

Nearly one in four Britons catch up on their TV via on-demand services such as the iPlayer and SkyGo at least once a week. The US came second with 17%, followed by 16% of people in Spain.

On-demand content can be enjoyed via a tablet or laptop but is also a big part of the appeal of the new generation of internet-enabled TVs branded 'smart'. And Britons are taking smart TV to their hearts.

Smart TVs allow people to watch on-demand content, play games and update Facebook as well as watching regular shows. Some 15% of people polled said they owned a smart TV, which outstrips the one in 10 stepping into the brave new world in the US.

The findings show we're at the forefront of latest TV technology, with the number of people who own HDTVs in Britain greater than in other European countries such as France and Germany.

Some 41% of UK homes have a HDTV compared to 18% and 28% in France and Germany respectively.
We also watch a lot of TV. Ofcom says the average Briton gets through more than four hours of telly per day, the third highest total in the world.

James Thickett, Ofcom's director of research, said: "Our research shows that UK consumers continue to benefit from one of the most advanced markets for communications products and services.

"We have always been a nation of TV lovers, and our research shows that UK consumers are world leaders in using the latest TV technology. By catching up on programmes online or using smart TVs, the UK public is finding new ways to enhance their viewing experience."

The Market Report looked at the take-up, availability, price and use of broadband, landlines, mobiles, TV and radio across 17 major countries.