How Much DVR Content Never Gets Viewed? Study Delves Into the Mysteries of DVR Backlogs

Mar 21, 2013  •  Post A Comment

A new study examines how much of the material recorded on DVRs goes unwatched, and it finds that the amount is substantial.

According to the study from Motorola Mobility, 41% of recorded content on DVRs in the U.S. is never watched, reports EW.com’s Inside TV.

More than 77% of TV viewers say they record shows because there are other programs airing at the same time. "But the fact they aren’t watching is significant, especially at a time when the broadcast nets want Nielsen to measure live-plus-7 days of viewing to help entice advertisers," the story says.

Nevertheless, DVR usage is up, with 46% of homes in the U.S. owning one of the devices, compared with 30% a year earlier.


  1. I DVR everything and rarely watch anything live. My DVR will record up to (3) programs at one time so when I am watching (1) program on the DVR and the DVR is recording (2) or (3) new programs it is a little hard to keep caught up. I have a 2T hard drive and it is currently around 88% full so yea, in some cases, I have a season or two of some programs that have not been viewed yet.
    I plan on watching them but just haven’t gotten around to it yet.
    I guess the hope is that after May, when most TV seasons come to an end, I will have (3) months or so to try and catch up on some of it anyway until the 2013 season kicks off again this fall.

  2. I have a similar situation, but I don’t save weekly shows. Those I usually catch up on by Saturday night. I do have a large selection of movies and mini-series stored and have gone through and eliminated many others as I changed my mind about viewing them.

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