Cross-Platform Convergence


Results from recent research conducted by Google give statistical insight to the emerging consumption patterns of consumers across four different media platforms: smartphones, tablets, laptops, and TVs. Interestingly, “90% of all of our media consumption, or 4.4 hours per day, is happening across all four (which doesn’t leave much room for paper-based books and publications; or for radio).” Not only does this indicate consumers’ preferences for digital resources over print, but also the findings of this research carry strong implications for how content should be designed.

The screen used for the longest periods of time is the TV, but 77% of consumers’ time spent watching TV is accompanied by using another device. Smartphones are used for the shortest amounts of time (17 minutes per session). Also, “[t]he research found that a majority of online tasks get initiated on a smartphone while being continued on another device.” While this may not be surprising, “sequential device usage” has significant implications on the way companies (in this case Google) think about content creation and the presentation of their content.

Jenkins mentions we must rethink what it is to consume media, and media consumers are now viewing content on multiple devices as well as multitasking during consumption. The way media companies are reorganizing in order to accommodate these new consumption patterns is interesting to observe as they also restructure to account for recent trends in user-generated content.

~Senia Borden


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