PVRs not a threat to advertising: TVB

A 'good news' study by the Television Bureau of Canada says those who use personal video recorders to catch their favourite shows are still paying attention to ads.

Personal video recorder (PVR) penetration among consumers aged 18 or over is only at 13.5%, asserts a new study released yesterday by the Television Bureau of Canada (TVB).

The study, which relied on BBM Analytics omniVU data, shows that, all in all, respondents report 98.8% of the television they watch is live rather than in a PVR playback mode.

‘This is good news for advertisers and agencies,’ says Theresa Treutler, TVB president/CEO. ‘It shows that mainstream television advertising remains relevant and effective.’

Three-quarters of those who view in playback mode report that they are aware of the commercials they are fast-forwarding through, or skipping. As well, of those who use PVRs to fast-forward or skip ads, more than half say they will stop to watch commercials they find interesting or entertaining.

‘Taking into account the small proportion of viewing in playback mode, these results indicate that the PVR is currently having little effect on commercial awareness,’ says Treutler. ‘Using a PVR to skip commercials is currently not much of an issue.’

Despite the relatively small effect PVRs are having on TV viewing habits, and subsequently on advertisers, Treutler tells MiC, ‘There’s no room for complacency here. We have to track it, and we are.’