[eMarketer] US TV viewership declined by roughly 10 million in 2020
TV viewership in the United States declined by roughly 10 million, and 2020 ended up with 20 million fewer adults watching TV. This is according to new data from eMarketer.
The data also reveals that those who stayed ratcheted up their time: Among US TV-watching adults, daily time spent with TV increased by a robust 9.2%, to 4 hours, 31 minutes (4:31) per day. Thanks to this boost by those who kept their cords, TV time among the whole adult population increased year over year in 2020 for the first time since 2012, jumping from 3:27 in 2019 to 3:34.
Early in 2020, as the pandemic was getting underway, eMarketer notes that Americans flocked to their TV sets at a rate unseen in years. Initially, US households were glued to the news, as uncertainty over the coronavirus drove viewership. In the following weeks, the TVs mostly stayed on, as the initial wave of lockdowns kept Americans stuck on the couch with lots of new time to kill.
As the US slowly emerges from the pandemic and enters a year with less time spent at home, no election coverage to monitor, and (hopefully) fewer gripping national news events, eMarketer notes that TV will not retain its 2020 gains.