Study: DVRs in 27 Percent of TV Homes

New research reaffirms that there’s a DVR boom underway, so why can’t TiVo capitalize on it? Leichtman Research Group (LRG) said today that 27 percent of TV households in the U.S. have at least one DVR, and 30 percent of those homes have more than one. Bruce Leichtman, president and principal analyst for LRG, is quoted as saying that the number of DVR households in the U.S. basically doubled in the past two years and will double again in the next four years.

LRG’s estimate is in line with recent data from Nielsen, which put the DVR install base at 25 percent of U.S. homes.

Other findings from the LRG study include:

  • 68 percent of DVR owners say they usually watch recorded DVR programs when there is nothing on regularly scheduled TV
  • 35 percent of DVR owners feel that they spend more time watching programs recorded on their DVR than regularly scheduled programs
  • 45 percent of DVR owners record five or fewer programs per week

Backing up a previous study from NDS, LRG found that people really like their DVRs, with 87 percent saying they’d recommend their DVR service to a friend (they must not be Comcast subscribers).

So why isn’t TiVo, the name synonymous with DVR’ing, king of the world? Because of cable. Our friends at TV By the Numbers have been keeping track, and while cable offerings are attracting more than a million new DVR subscribers a month, TiVo is losing 50,000 subs a month.

And things won’t get any better once people can kick those bulky standalone set-top boxes for a network DVR.