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Catch-up or on-demand television services now account for a fifth of the UK’s TV viewing, first-ever YouView census into national television habits reveals.

According to the study of more 2,000 people, Britons are increasingly relying on non-traditional ways to enjoy television when it’s more convenient for them rather than tuning in during schedules airtimes.

Catch-up and on-demand services now represent around six hours of TV watching for the average home in a typical week, with much of the growth coming from the 18-24 demographic, which consumes nine hours and 20 minutes of on demand viewing, just under a third of their total weekly TV enjoyment.

Parents of under-16s surveyed, meanwhile, estimate that their children watch on about seven hours of catch-up TV per week.

The rise of catch-up and on-demand services have been the boosted by their availability on a wide range of devices, such as smartphones, tablets, set-top boxes such as YouView and games consoles.

Some 26 per cent of homes now have six or more devices to watch TV on compared to just five per cent five years ago.

Steve Conway, Head of Marketing at YouView said: “Television is a huge part of British life but we know the way people view it is changing beyond all recognition. What is becoming important to TV fans is being able to watch what they want, whenever they want it and this research supports that.

“Among 18-24 year olds, 37% said the ability to watch on demand TV was very important compared to a quarter nationally and as a nation we are craving more and more time with our favourite programmes, on our own terms.”

YouView’s research also reveals that consumers are spending around 40 per cent more on subscription TV than they did five years ago, with an average monthly outlay per household of £29.98, while a quarter of homes spend more than £50 per month.

Have you noticed an uplift of your TV consumption because of catch-up and on-demand services? Tell us how in the comments section below.

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