The Second Screen Phenomenon

Election time is full of chaos; endless updates on all forms of digital and print media, political debates in online forums and on social media platforms, the desire to check our mobile devices anytime and anywhere to check up on the stats.

Mixing live events, such as U.S. presidential debates and election night, with the availability of mobile devices has spawned a term called “second screen phenomenon.” This occurs when a person is not only watching television, but at the same time also utilizing another mobile device, perhaps to complement the program they are watching.

PEW Research has found that 27% of respondents watching election night not only used online sources, but also television to get their updates on the matter.

Not only do these mobile devices allow users to be updated on the most current happenings, but also add to monitor media responses, fact check the debate, follow live reactions of different reporters, and to add to the live social media buzz on platforms such as Twitter and Facebook.

This second screen phenomenon suggests that we are being enabled and encouraged to consume news. It suggests that our mobile devices, such as our phones and tablets, are tools that can help us to stay informed of the news and to consume news more easily than ever before.

Do you find yourself taking part in the second screen phenomenon?

More Devices = More News

Does this hold true: More devices = more news?

According to Pew Research, there is merely a correlation between news consumption and the acquisition of new digital devices.

The research above suggests that people do not simply replace news intake on one device with another, but instead indicates a trend in which people increase their news consumption as they increase their supply of mobile devices. 34% of computer news consumers also get news on a smartphone and 17% on a tablet, and 27% of smartphone users also get news on a tablet.

This reinforces the study (shown below) that 31% of tablet news users claimed to have spent more time getting news on their tablets, and 43% claimed that the tablet has allowed them to add to the amount of news they consume.

With these studies, we can see that the advances of mobile technology is allowing us easier access to news consumption, and that we not only recognize this but that we act upon it by actually spending more time on news.

Have you found yourself spending more time on news with your phone/tablet?