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OPLIN 4Cast #298: Multi-screening

Posted in 4cast

If you have two or more monitors hooked up to your computer, you are not multi-screening. No, multi-screening is a relatively new term that refers to people using a variety of devices with screens throughout the day, the primary types of screened devices being smartphones, tablets, desktop computers/laptops, and televisions. And Google has just released a study of The New Multi-Screen World [pdf] with some interesting findings that are well worth knowing as you think about your library’s presence on the Internet.

  • The Netflix effect: In a multi-screen world, being seamless is the next big task (MediaPost/Steve Smith)  “As Google is right to point out, the real impact of devices is that people are pursuing and continuing activities across screens. It speaks to the basic device agnosticism that consumers are experiencing more perhaps than the media and marketing companies serving them really are providing. They see these digital information sources and tools as contiguous even if they really aren’t in most cases.”
  • Are you a screen juggler? You’re not alone, Google finds (CNET/Elinor Mills)  “Ninety percent of all media interactions were on a screen of some type or another, which leaves 10 percent for radio and print versions of newspapers and magazines, the study found. And our smartphones are crucial. We may use them for shorter stretches of time than we use the TV, personal computer or tablet — but we are gravitating to them more and more frequently.”
  • Navigating the new multi-screen world: Insights show how consumers use different devices together (Google Mobile Ads Blog/Phil Farhi)  “It’s important to understand both the sequential and simultaneous multi-screening patterns. Sequential screeners will start interacting with you on one device and then pick up where they left off on another, so making experiences seamless between devices is key. Additionally, cross-media campaigns can help you make the most of consumers’ simultaneous usage across screens.”
  • If content is king, multiscreen is the queen, says new Google study (TechCrunch/Ingrid Lunden)  “That effectively means that while your total content experience perhaps doesn’t need to be designed for a smartphone experience, at least the initial part of it should be, and that part should be integrated with how that content might be used on other devices — so, for example, watching a film first on a phone and then finishing it on a TV, or starting a shopping experience on a phone and finishing it on a PC.”

Olympic fact:
Comcast found that their average Xfinity customer watching live streams of the London Olympic games online used 2.4 devices.