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More Americans watching video online


 The number of Americans watching video on their computers has doubled over the past year and growing numbers of younger viewers are enjoying movies and TV shows online, according to a study released Friday by ABI Research.

The study found that the number of American consumers watching video streamed through a browser had soared over the past year, from 32 percent a year ago to 63 percent today.

ABI Research said growth in consumption of online video was due to a number of factors, including an increase in the amount of rich content available and more broadband connections.

"Consumers are changing their online habits quickly," ABI's Digital Home research director Michael Wolf said in a statement.

"Broadband speeds have continued to increase at the same time that Hollywood has decided online distribution is a legitimate monetization opportunity that will increase total return on their video assets, and expand audiences."

Much of the growth in the number of Americans watching video online was among younger viewers, the study found, but "consumers of all age groups (are) increasing the frequency and duration of their online video consumption."

It said that although there was increasing demand for both short- and long-form video it was mostly younger viewers who were watching movies or long-form television shows online.

"When asked if they watched long-form content in the form of TV shows or movies online, nearly half of those under 25, and 53 percent of those aged 25-29 indicate they do so once a month or more," ABI Research said.

"Today's younger consumers are developing habits that will mean drastic changes for the video entertainment market," said Wolf.

"Many consume a large percentage or even a majority of their video entertainment through online distribution today."

The study found that while some older viewers had experimented with watching long-form video online, "three quarters of those over 65 who watch video online responded that they have never watched TV shows or movies online."

New York-based ABI Research surveyed 985 online households for the study, asking consumers about their preferences in technology usage and entertainment consumption.




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