Blog Post

Fresh TV Stats: More Sets Than People in Homes

New stats from Nielsen show that the average U.S. home has more TVs in it than people. According to the research firm, in 2009 the average U.S. household had just 2.5 people but had 2.86 televisions.


This represents a 43 percent increase since 1990, when the average American home had only 2.0 TV sets (how did we even get by back then?!). Other key stats from Nielsen’s Television Audience Report:

  • 38% of U.S. TV homes have digital cable.
  • 88% have a DVD player, while VCR fell to 72%.
  • 82% of homes have more than 1 television set.
  • 11% of U.S. TV homes only have the capability to receive TV reception “over the air”. These homes have neither cable nor ADS.

As we keep adding TV sets to our homes, there’s a good chance they will have wireless connectivity. A new study from ABI Research forecasts that by 2011, roughly 20 million wireless networked TVs will be shipped worldwide.

The wirelessly networked TV is a hot space right now with many different standards vying to be the top dog. Amimon, which just raised an additional $10 million, is pushing its WHDI solution; SiBEAM uses the WirelessHD standard; the WiGig Alliance plans to use the 60 GHz spectrum; and Quantenna wants to use Wi-Fi.

ABI highlights Wi-Fi as a winner. From the study’s press release:

Ethernet will handle the wired type of connection in most cases, but will wireless technology prevail? If it does, the most likely candidate is Wi-Fi, although it’s true that 802.11b and 802.11g may suffer some latency and interference problems. 802.11n Wi-Fi, though, should provide a fully capable connection, and its growing adoption will improve support for networked TVs.