Survey: Younger viewers prefer using smartphones as TV remote controls

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More than 40 percent of viewers ages 18 to 34 would prefer to use their smartphones as a remote control than traditional TV remote controls, according to a new study.

Xfinity Android remote control app

Young viewers are eschewing the remote control in favor of their smartphones. Pictured: Comcast's Xfinity Android app.

Cable and satellite providers such as Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA), DirecTV (Nasdaq: DTV), Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) and Verizon (NYSE: VZ) have created apps for mobile phones and tablet computers that allow subscribers to use the devices as remote controls, and the findings of the survey from Boston consulting firm Altman Vilandrie & Company and data collection company Research Now suggest there will be significant demand for those applications.

"Instead of the age-old argument about who holds the TV remote, families will soon be squabbling over whose smartphone is controlling the TV," Altman Vilandrie director Jonathan Hurd said in announcing the results of the survey.

While viewers may rely on apps that pay TV providers are creating for devices such as Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL) iPhone and iPad and smartphones and tablets running Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG) Android platform, the survey also found younger viewers are turning to Internet video. Altman reported that 20 percent of consumers said they spend less time watching cable TV, noting that online video meets their needs.

The survey also found that 34 percent of 18- to 34-year-olds said they have "seriously considered" dropping cable TV service to rely entirely on online video for home entertainment, but that only 3 to 4 percent of all consumers have actually cut the cord on cable subscriptions.

For more:
- see this news release

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