Majority of U.S. adults own a streaming-enabled TV, according to IAB study

TVs with streaming video capabilities have made a big leap in the past two years — 56 percent of U.S. adults own a streaming-enabled television, up from one-third of adults in 2015.

That’s according to the latest study on “The Changing TV Experience” from the Interactive Advertising Bureau and MARU Matchbox, with results based on an online survey.

The study also says Viewers are actually taking advantage of those streaming capabilities, with the majority (54 percent) of TV-watching time now spent on content other than traditional, linear TV. Twenty percent of that non-linear time goes to digital video, a category that includes both original online content and network TV shows that are made available digitally.

The survey asked about advertising as well, with 50 percent of streaming TV owners saying they’d rather watch commercials than pay for ad-free subscriptions, and 44 percent saying commercials in digital video are less intrusive than they are on linear TV. (Worth noting: The IAB is a trade group representing online publishers and advertisers — it’s currently holding its annual NewFronts event where publishers pitch their video content to advertisers.)

“Consumers aren’t just passive recipients of marketing — they understand that there’s a value exchange,” said Chris Kuist, the IAB’s senior vice president of research and impact.

Of course, when we talk about digital video, we aren’t just talking about TVs — people also watch on smartphones, tablets and other devices. However, Kuist said this study was largely focused on TVs.

“It’s about how people still want to consume the content, and the big screen remains a really powerful way to do that,” he said.

Last month, comScore released a study showing that more than half of WiFi-enabled households are now using at least one over-the-top streaming service, with Netflix leading the pack.