Yes, Americans are still couch potatoes

Sedentary lifestyles will never die! That’s right, Americans are still couch potatoes – despite the fact that the number of U.S. households with TV sets dropped from 98.9 % to 96.7% for the first time in 20 years.

Nielsen attributes this ever so slight drop to two factors: economic duress and so-called “technological wizardry.”

“[Those with income under 20K] are people at the bottom of the economic spectrum for whom, if the TV breaks, if the antenna blows off the roof, they have to think long and hard about what to do,” Nielsen analyst Pat McDonough told the New York Times.

“If you’re an affluent household — or most middle-class households — you’re going to get a satellite dish. If you’re a struggling household, likely you’re not going to be able to afford that option.”

Meanwhile, younger, more tech savvy viewers prefer to watch TV shows and films over the Internet.

This likely indicates that in some ways, the role of the traditional television set is being slowly replaced by computers and other electronic devices such as tablets.

“While Nielsen data demonstrates that consumers are viewing more video content across all platforms — rather than replacing one medium with another — a small subset of younger, urban consumers seem to be going without paid TV subscriptions for the time being.

“The long-term effects of this are still unclear, as it is undetermined if this is also an economic issue that will see these individuals entering the TV marketplace once they have the means, or the beginning of a larger shift to online viewing,” McDonough added.