CBS: DVRs Encourage TV Viewing

Jan 19, 2005  •  Post A Comment

Contradicting some prevailing wisdom on digital video recorders, CBS, in a report released Tuesday during the Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour in Los Angeles, said consumer use of DVRs encourages more TV viewing and better attention to TV commercials.

Despite warnings that DVRs will mean fewer viewers watching specific TV shows and lower value on commercials because of fast-forwarding, CBS found just the opposite, said David Poltrack, executive VP of research and planning. For instance, research revealed viewership of “CSI” to be twice as high among DVR owners as among non-DVR owners. Overall, DVR users watched almost twice as much TV as non-DVR users, according to the research.

“It has enhanced the TV experience,” Mr. Poltrack said. “People have viewed this as a threat — not as an opportunity.”

He also said more than one-fifth of DVR users who fast-forward through commercials said they recall at least one commercial — which is similar to the rate of recall for viewers who don’t have DVRs. Also, DVR consumers who fast-forward through commercials need to be attentive to the screen in order to return to play mode.

“I believe this will lead to more advertising value,” Mr. Poltrack said.