57% of US adult TV viewers agree that the shows on cable TV are better than network TV shows, per results from a Harris Poll. The survey also finds that an equal percentage strongly (28%) or somewhat (29%) agree that they find themselves watching more and more cable and less network TV.
TV viewers are less convinced about the superiority of programs found on premium channels, though: only 4 in 10 agree that the shows on pay cable TV (such as HBO and Showtime) are better than basic cable shows (on channels such as FX and AMC).
Premium channels appear to be under fire from over-the-top (OTT) options such as Netflix, with its original programming possibly seen as an alternative to premium cable. Indeed, recent research from GfK suggests that Netflix users are watching less premium cable as a result of their subscriptions. Moreover, a study from Centris Marketing Sciences found a dip in the number of households with children subscribing to premium channels during Q2.
While Centris also saw a rise in the number of those households subscribing to OTT options, the Harris survey results indicate that only one-third of TV viewers find themselves watching more and more TV via streaming, with more than 6 in 10 disagreeing that that was the case.
Separately, the Harris Poll looks at the types of shows that are most popular with Americans. Asked the 2 types of shows they would say are their favorites, respondents pointed to comedy/sitcoms (39%) and detective/crime shows (32%) first, followed by news (24%), drama (23%) and reality/competition (19%).
There were some notable discrepancies in the results when sorting by age and gender. For example, comedy/sitcoms were 20% more likely to be cited as a top-2 genre by men than women (42% vs. 35%). By contrast, women were more likely to choose detective and crime shows among their top 2 (35% vs. 29%).
Meanwhile, comedy/sitcoms were far more popular among 18-36-year-olds (47%) than respondents aged 68 and up (18%). In fact, news (53%) programs were by far the most commonly-cited genre by the older age group.
Source: marketingcharts.com, 9/10/13