TNS collects data on media convergence
Poor knowledge and a lack of communication about the advantages of convergent products make the merging of classic media, Internet and telecommunications services difficult, judges Wolfgang Werres from TNS Infratest Media Research. Nevertheless, the process is on the right track.
As the Convergence Group of experts at TNS found in their Convergence Monitor study, almost 70 percent of those who use the Internet for more than two hours a day (=33 percent of 14 to 64-year-olds) also watch television for more than two hours a day. The content of these two media and their use also became increasingly mixed. Until recently, intensive Internet users tended to be infrequent television viewers and vice versa. This is increasingly no longer the case.
According to the study, 48 percent read breaking news and information online, 27 percent watch videos, video podcasts and clips online, and 15 percent listen to web radio and podcasts online. Films and television offers on demand are currently used by four percent of 14 to 64 year olds. Irrespective of whether the programs are requested via the set-top box of the television or with the computer via the Internet: In the survey, the television proves to be by far the preferred end device in all age groups.
A third of 14 to 64-year-olds now receive the programs for personal television via digital reception (32 percent). Three percent of Germans aged 14 to 64 use “triple play”, i.e. the complete package of television, telephone and broadband internet connection. Another 14 percent are willing to buy. A total of 35 percent of 14 to 64-year-olds see their television, Internet and telephone needs fully or largely met by the offer described and are therefore open and reachable for “triple play” offers.
IPTV, television based on the Internet Protocol (IP), has so far only been used by 0.6 percent or . 200 000 households. A further seven percent are interested in this technology. The experts at the TNS Convergence Group see household coverage in Germany of up to three percent by the end of 2009 as realistic potential. As the most important obstacles to IPTV, they name a lack of knowledge about the new types of use associated with it, the additional costs to be feared and the still limited access options.
The group sees mobile phones as one of the pioneers of convergence. The mobile telephone devices had functions that were previously only possible with separate end devices. The current data shows that these functions are also used intensively: 56 percent of those surveyed use functions such as taking photos, 27 percent listen to music on their mobile phone, 18 percent use the e-mail function and twelve percent use the Internet on the go.
However, the idea of television with a mobile phone is still met with great skepticism among the population. Only 1.6 percent of the 14 to 64 year olds showed any interest in buying at all. Many could hardly imagine TV on the small display of their mobile phone. They often doubted the general benefits and balked at the costs. The Involvement Index for cell phone TV compiled by TNS – made up of awareness, information search and willingness to buy – even declined compared to the previous year.
“As before, the lack of knowledge and the lack of communication of the advantages of convergent products are clear barriers to sweeping market success,” sums up Wolfgang Werres, Managing Director of TNS Infratest MediaResearch and a member of the TNS Conversion Group. For providers of convergent products and services, this means that they have to do even more than before to communicate practical user benefits.
For the TNS Conversion Monitor study, the media researchers in Germany interviewed a total of 1,575 people aged 14 to 64. TNS Infratest InCom, TNS Infratest MediaResearch and TNS Emnid Medienforschung founded the TNS Convergence Group to take account of the growing challenges and issues surrounding the topic of “convergence”.