$5B drop seen in VOD, mobile, broadband spending

Multitasking remains high as consumers cut back

Ongoing concerns about the economy will result in a 15% cutback of consumer spending on subscription TV, broadband and mobile services, resulting in a $5 billion drop in revenue, according to a new report.

Pullback on premium cable and telecommunication services apparently hasn't affected multitasking in front of the television. Scottsdale, Ariz.-based In-Stat said 66 million consumers across multiple demographic categories are using the Internet while camped out on their sofas watching TV.

The report found that 33% of all male respondents, across age groups, said they sometimes use a personal computer simultaneously while watching TV. Among some male age groups the behavior was as high as 50%. In contrast, about 25% of female respondents reported using a computer while watching TV.

About 20% of all respondents reported doing instant messaging while watching TV, with similar responses among females and males.

"Consumer multitasking represents an important emerging opportunity for the TV industry," said Gerry Kaufhold, In-Stat analyst. "Local TV stations, TV networks, pay-TV networks, 24-hour news networks, sports leagues and music channels can instantly connect to some of their viewers, right now, on both the TV screen and on a laptop computer screen."