Interactive television company Ensequence has published results of a survey that suggests viewers are ready to interact with their televisions. The results show that 70% of viewers would consider signing up to another cable or satellite television provider if they offered advanced interactivity at no extra charge.
Over 70% of viewers indicated that they are currently using their remote controls to select programmes through on-screen guides, to schedule or select digital video recordings, or view video-on-demand programmes.
Their responses reveal that many want more interactive features and functions. 72% of those who watch reality shows said they want the opportunity to interact, while 65% said the same of sporting events and 66% wanted to interact with commercials.
The survey was conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of Ensequence using an online panel of nearly 3,000 adults within the United States, weighted to be representative of the national population.
“This study confirms that consumers have higher expectations and want to vote for contestants, get additional product information during commercials, purchase tickets for live events or get scores and statistics during sporting events — all using their remote controls,” said Dalen Harrison, the chief executive of Ensequence.
While interactive television has long been anticipated in the United States, the deployments to date have often fallen far short of the original promise. Ensequence remains one of the long-standing proponents of interactive television and claims it is now making it a reality.
Ensequence recently received a Technical and Engineering Emmy Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for their MLB.TV Mosaic broadband application. This allows baseball fans to watch up to six games simultaneously.
“Interactive television is now going mainstream and this prestigious award is further proof of its already profound impact,” said Dalen Harrison. “This award is a tribute to our dedicated team and our forward-thinking clients, who have continuously shown their commitment to pushing the boundaries of television.”
The technical limitations of many of the existing television platforms mean that much of the innovation around interactive services is taking place on broadband connected computer screens. The expectation is that some of this innovation will find its way onto the large screen in the living room, with users interacting through their remote controls.