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Almost half of UK viewers watch TV recorded or on-demand as opposed to traditional broadcasts in the allotted time slot, according to a study.

43 per cent of people predominantly watch time-shifted TV, while only 30 per cent watch live. Of the 43 per cent who prefer time-shifted TV, 20 per cent tune in only for 'must-see' moments.

The study was carried out by Virgin Media, which took data from over 2.3 million of its TiVo set-top boxes.

It puts the growth of time-shifted TV down to the rise of 'series stacking' – where every episode of a series is available to watch while the series is on air – and the fact that entire box sets are available on-demand for 'binge viewing'.

One in 10 say they dedicate all their viewing time to a single series at a time, while four in 10 flick between series depending on what mood they are in.

Recorded TV series and one-off shows are generally watched within 14 days of broadcast, while films are often kept for longer and watched at a weekend.

Social media also plays a big part in TV watching. Just over a third of people use second screens while watching TV, with 78 per cent using social media at the same time.

Viewers are quick to set up a series link for shows recommended via social media (what it calls ‘reflex recording’).

The research ties into the company's latest advertising campaign which has anthropomorphised animals representing each type of viewer – a bear who stays on the sofa for a movie marathon, a night owl who watches box sets into the night, etc.

Find out which kind of viewer you are by taking the quiz here.

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