Online video going mainstream, says Cisco study

70 percent of U.S. broadband users watch professionally produced Internet video
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In 2012, watching online video became more than just a hobby for cutting-edge Internet enthusiasts, found a survey performed by the Cisco (Nasdaq: CSCO) Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG) studying the "trends and behaviors" of 1,152 video consumers in the United States.

Image source: Cisco blogs

Among the study's findings, "70 percent of U.S. broadband users are watching professionally produced Internet video every week with an average viewing time of more than 100 minutes per week," Chris Osika, senior director, U.S. Service Provider at IBSG, said in a blog.

Of course, that's the mainstream audience. The more cutting edge group of 18- to 24-year-olds came in at 94 percent.

"Overall, streaming video is ahead of downloading and about even with DVDs and Blu-ray discs," Osika continued.

Broadcast television, still more easily accessible than online video, still rules the roost, but the report noted it's probably losing ground since about 48 percent of consumers increased their streaming of "professionally produced video content" in the past two years. Average Internet viewing of professionally produced content, both streamed and downloaded, consumed 13.8 percent of viewing time, the study revealed.

Online video continues to provide the attraction of something for nothing, as free and ad supported sites such as TV network Web sites and Hulu brought in more than 40 percent of the viewers, while a for-fee play like Hulu Plus grabbed only 9 percent.

Possibly the most important trend of the study was the least surprising.

"More consumers have increased their consumption of Internet video on the tablet in the last two years than on any other video-capable device," Osika wrote. "Consumers who favor the integrated experience--merging television and the Internet via a set-top boxes--spend the most time watching Web video."

For more:
- Cisco offered this blog by Chris Osika
- the blog highlights this report

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