Feb 28, 2017

Fewer Americans are watching TV

Leah Hogsten / The Salt Lake Tribune via AP

The Energy Information Administration's (EIA) most recent Residential Energy Consumption Survey revealed that the average number of televisions in American homes is declining. One notable factor is that younger households tend to have a lower concentration of TVs per person, and a higher concentration of portable devices — like laptops and smart phones. Other findings:

  • An average of 2.3 TVs were in American homes in 2015, down from an average of 2.6 TVs in 2009.
  • Number of homes with 3 or more TVs have declined since 2009, and a larger share of homes reported not using a TV at all.
  • TVs and the equipment that accompanies them — cable boxes, DVRs, video game consoles — account for about 6% of all electricity consumption in U.S. homes.
  • Older houses are more likely to have higher concentrations of desktop computers.

Quick take: The data is just more proof of changing media consumption habits among younger consumers, who are increasingly cutting the cord of traditional TV service in favor of watching content on mobile devices and laptops.

Go deeper

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Why it matters: The mass protests that have swept across the United States are not just a response to the death of George Floyd, but of the dozens of high-profile instances of unarmed black men dying at the hands of police officers over the years.

Atlanta mayor on Trump's riot response: "He speaks and he makes it worse"

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What she's saying: "This is like Charlottesville all over again. He speaks and he makes it worse. There are times when you should just be quiet. And I wish that he would just be quiet."

Black Americans' competing crises

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

For many black Americans, this moment feels like a crisis within a crisis within a crisis.

The big picture: It's not just George Floyd's killing by police. Or the deaths of EMT Breonna Taylor and jogger Ahmaud Arbery. Or the demeaning of birdwatcher Christian Cooper and journalist Omar Jimenez. Or the coronavirus pandemic's disproportionate harm to African Americans. It's that it's all happening at once.