Comscore Assesses COVID-19’s Impact on Audio Streaming

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The takeaways

  • Comscore has released data showing the impact of COVID-19 on home audio streaming consumption.
  • The media analytics firm found that audio streaming habits have risen 32% over the past two months, earmarking it as home entertainment’s new growth area.
  • Usage of interconnected streaming devices also rose amongst consumers, with Amazon Fire TV alone tallying over 67 million hours in May.

Via Comscore

What happened?

Comscore’s Total Home Panel has released data showing shifts in audio consumption across U.S. households. The analysts assessed trend variations based on the impact of COVID-19 on streaming habits.

When the lockdown first started in mid-March, overall streaming gained an immediate 18% boost. By contrast, home audio streaming only began moving upwards in early April and continued through mid-June 2020. Overall, from the end of December 30, 2019 to mid-June 15, 2020, the averages for daily audio streaming duration and hours per household increased 32% and 3.93 hours, respectively. From this, Comscore concludes that audio streaming is home entertainment’s next big trend.



Via Comscore

Consumer behaviour

Comscore ranked service providers Spotify, iHeartRadio, and Pandora Radio at the top for total listening hours. Notably, Pandora had by far the largest bump for in-home audio streaming hours at 42%. All three companies provide varied content such as podcasts, music and audiobooks. Also cited were streaming services Apple iTunes and Amazon Music.

What’s also of interest is the rising use of connected TV (CTV) devices, including gaming consoles and Smart TVs. First in home audio streaming was Amazon Fire TV at over 67 million hours in May 2020, followed by Amazon Echo and Google Home. It’s easy to conclude that the pandemic has stimulated these results, much as it did for news publishers.

Comscore continues to investigate Over-the-top (OTT) viewing habits across the U.S. The company previously reported on significant year-on-year home data usage in March, with connected TVs and streaming boxes each adding over 36%.

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