"I'm just on my phone and they're watching TV"
Quantifying Mobile Device Use while Watching Television

Christian Holz, Frank Bentley, Karen Church and Mitesh Patel. TVX 2015.
Yahoo Labs, Sunnyvale, CA.

Abstract

In recent years, mobile devices have become a part of our daily lives—much like television sets had over the second half of the 20th century. Increasingly, people are using mobile devices while watching television. We set out to understand this behavior on a minute-by-minute quantified level as well as users’ motivations and purposes of device use while watching television. We conducted a novel mixed-methods study inside seven households with fourteen instrumented phone and tablet devices, capturing all app launches and app use durations, correlated with the moment in the television program when they occurred. Surprisingly, we found little difference between the volume of device use during programs and commercials. Our two main findings are that 1) participants often joined family members in the TV room to physically be together; when they lack interest in the program, they spend the majority of the show on a secondary device and watch TV only during key moments. 2) Virtually none of participants’ app and web use during TV consumption was directly related to the running show. With our study, we set the stage for larger-scale investigations into the details of mobile interactions while watching television. Our novel method will aid future work of the community as a means of fully understanding multi-device use alongside television consumption.

Publication

Christian Holz, Frank Bentley, Karen Church and Mitesh Patel. 2015. "I’m just on my phone and they’re watching TV": Quantifying mobile device use while watching television. In Proceedings of the 2015 ACM international conference on Interactive experiences for TV and online video (TVX '15). Brussels, Belgium (June 3-5, 2015). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 93–102.

Presentation deck

In-home presentation Slide 1
In-home presentation Slide 2
In-home presentation Slide 3
In-home presentation Slide 4
In-home presentation Slide 5
In-home presentation Slide 6
In-home presentation Slide 7
In-home presentation Slide 8
In-home presentation Slide 9
In-home presentation Slide 10
In-home presentation Slide 11
In-home presentation Slide 12
In-home presentation Slide 13
In-home presentation Slide 14
In-home presentation Slide 15
In-home presentation Slide 16
In-home presentation Slide 17
In-home presentation Slide 18
In-home presentation Slide 19
In-home presentation Slide 20
In-home presentation Slide 21
In-home presentation Slide 22
In-home presentation Slide 23
In-home presentation Slide 24
In-home presentation Slide 25
In-home presentation Slide 26
In-home presentation Slide 27
In-home presentation Slide 28
In-home presentation Slide 29
In-home presentation Slide 30
In-home presentation Slide 31
In-home presentation Slide 32
In-home presentation Slide 33
In-home presentation Slide 34
In-home presentation Slide 35
In-home presentation Slide 36
In-home presentation Slide 37
In-home presentation Slide 38
In-home presentation Slide 39
In-home presentation Slide 40
In-home presentation Slide 41
In-home presentation Slide 42
In-home presentation Slide 43
In-home presentation Slide 44
In-home presentation Slide 45
In-home presentation Slide 46
In-home presentation Slide 47
In-home presentation Slide 48
In-home presentation Slide 49
In-home presentation Slide 50
In-home presentation Slide 51
In-home presentation Slide 52
In-home presentation Slide 53
In-home presentation Slide 54
In-home presentation Slide 55
In-home presentation Slide 56
In-home presentation Slide 57
In-home presentation Slide 58
In-home presentation Slide 59
In-home presentation Slide 60
In-home presentation Slide 61
In-home presentation Slide 62
In-home presentation Slide 63
In-home presentation Slide 64
In-home presentation Slide 65
In-home presentation Slide 66
In-home presentation Slide 67