September 3, 2008 Anyone who has ever owned a DVR will attest to the usefulness of the device, so we were interested to see the results of a new survey commissioned by global digital pay-TV technology solutions provider NDS. Though such surveys are often clearly contrived to generate obvious promotional fodder for the benefit of the commissioning company, the responses from the UK, US, Australia and Italy clearly demonstrate that the DVR has moved into the indispensable household technology category for those who have experienced it, and equally, that it improves family harmony. The vast majority of respondents would rather give up their landline phone, dishwasher, radio or MP3 player than their DVR due to how much it has improved their enjoyment of television.
According to the survey, which asked respondents to rank relative importance of a list of household appliances, apart from the washing machine and the microwave oven, no other household item was deemed more essential than the DVR in today’s homes. Intriguingly, Italians surveyed also ranked the hairdryer higher than a DVR. And when it comes to essential technology gadgets, the DVR is second only to the mobile phone as the item they can’t live without. Intriguingly, the vast majority of respondents would rather give up their landline phone, dishwasher, radio and MP3 player than their DVR. More than 70% of DVR owners say that they cannot live without their DVR, according to a new survey
The survey also revealed that over 60% of DVR owners with a partner felt that having a DVR had improved their relationship. In the US, UK and Australia, respondents attributed this improvement to having the ability to watch their own programmes while sharing their favourites with each other. Surveyed Italians feel that their improved relationship happiness is due to the DVR allowing them to plan their evening’s viewing better.
More than three quarters of DVR owners with families in the US, Italy and Australia also feel that having a DVR has improved their family relationships, eliminating arguments over TV and allowing for the whole family to join the dinner table. In Britain, the figure was around two-thirds.
Other key findings from the survey include:
* DVR owners watch on average slightly more than four hours (4.075) of recorded and live television a day
* 89% of Americans, 81% of British, 80% of Australians and 78% of Italians all reported that the DVR has improved how much they enjoy watching television
* Nearly 61% think that a DVR is much easier to operate than a video cassette recorder * Almost 58% find that they are watching more interesting TV programmes since getting a DVR
* More than three out of four agree that since getting a DVR they are more likely to find something to watch, when they want to watch TV
* Many respondents with only one DVR are keen to get a second one: 30% of Brits, 52% of Americans, 49% of Australians and 57% of Italians
Commenting on the survey, Nigel Smith, Chief Marketing Officer of NDS, said: “The survey results show just how fast the DVR has become an indispensable part of people’s lives in the UK, US, Italy and Australia. It’s one of those technologies that, once tried, has you wondering how you coped before.”
The survey was carried out by Consumer Analysis Group in July 2008. The survey involved 1,012 people aged 18-70 years old who have a DVR at home. Consumers in the UK (256), US (252), Italy (251) and Australia (253), were questioned using a mix of phone, street and online interviews.