Despite the move toward convergence of television and PCs (including the increased availability of TV tuners for PCs and driver support of TV Tuners in Windows 98) simultaneous use of PCs and television is on the rise according to Media Metrix. Nearly half of all Windows PC households (47 percent) have a television in the same room as the PC, with both running simultaneously according to the 1998 HardScan Volume II report, compared with 40% in 1997.
The current semiannual metering and survey of 10,000 US households from the report indicates that out of the 35 million households that own Windows PCs, 17.3 million have their PCs and television set in the same room. Furthermore, 16.4 million Windows PC households have the television turned on at the same time the PC is in use in the same room. In fact, 12 million households use their PC and have the television on at the same time more than 25% of the time.
The Media Metrix Technology Group provides data from an on-going effort to electronically scan and monitor actual PC usage and ownership in a demographically balanced sample of households. The PCs in these households are equipped with proprietary, patented PC Meter software, which runs continuously to track real-time PC usage.