Television networks are losing viewers as cell phones continue to take a more prominent role in people's lives.
TV ratings for season finale shows fell 30 to 40 percent across all networks last month compared to the same time last year, the New York Post reported. Out of 61 returning show finales, only six saw an increase in ratings compared to a year ago in the key 18-to-49-year-old demographic.
According to the Post, the biggest losers among season finale episodes included:
- "Quantico," starring Priyanka Chopra on ABC, down 43.3 percent from last year's episode
- "Big Bang Theory" on CBS, 19.2 percent
- "NCIS" on CBS, down 43.6 percent
- "Reign" on The CW, down 30.8 percent
- "Empire" on Fox, down 39.1 percent
- "Rosewood" on Fox, down 59.7 percent
- "Shades of Blue" on NBC, down 35.5 percent
- "Chicago Med" on NBC, down 30.7 percent
Ratings for the shows are expected to improve once delayed viewing numbers within a three-day period are added in, the Post noted.
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"There’s a real reason people pay a fortune to be in live sports, and why networks are doing live musicals. Advertisers want live. You are watching, and you are engaged," said Billie Gold, vice president director of programming at ad agency Amplif, according to the Post.
More and people are also "cutting the cord" in favor of streaming and over-the-top (OTT) delivery. According to an Engadget report last year, "virtual TV streaming is to bring a whooping revenue of around $15.5 billion by 2020" and "more than 76 percent of U.S. households have taken to video-on-demand subscription."
Free over-the-air TV is expected to improve as a new broadcast standard, ATSC 3.0, is being discussed, Consumer Reports noted last month.
The new standard will support internet content, 4K video, high dynamic range (HDR) content, and mobile devices, Consumer Reports said.
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