Net's the fav spot for info on soaps: study

MUMBAI: It seems like viewers want to learn more about their favourite TV programmes on the Web. People are using the Internet to find out about their special shows - the plot and characters - says a report by Yahoo! and Mediaedge:cia.

Using the Web in this way--dubbed "media meshing" by the report-"fulfills a need to become more deeply involved with hobbies, interests or stories that kindle passionate involvement," states the report.

The study, "It's a Broadband Life", says that about four out of 10 viewers with broadband connections look up websites for information TV programming. The study, undertaken by Forrester Research, covered 3,207 adult consumers in the US and another firm HeadlightVision conducted interviews in 17 households.

Interestingly, websites mentioned in TV ads are then looked up by a whopping 34 per cent of broadband users. And 18 per cent, or one in five viewers, take part in online TV polls and 11 per cent go online to learn about characters in a show.

Wired broadband users account for 50 per cent of Internet hits while dial-up connections are lower at 43 per cent. Though wireless broadband users only account for 8 per cent of the traffic, the number is rising says, the report.

An important distinction between broadband and dial-up users is that the former spend an average of 6.2 more hours online each month at home than dial-up users. Broadband users also view an average of 2,330 pages each month at home--almost twice as many pages as the 1,217 views by dial-up users.

"Broadband really transformed users' experiences," said vice president-category development at Yahoo! Beth-Ann Eason. "When you have broadband, you're more likely to pursue a greater depth of knowledge around a particular topic," she said.

Broadband users are more likely to engage in a wide variety of online activity, including downloading videos, sharing photos, publishing Web pages and participating in online dating, than are dial-up users, according to the report.

Online buying is a hot activity with broadband users. Sixty-eight per cent of respondents with wireless broadband and 49 per cent of those with wired broadband report regularly making purchases on the Internet, compared to 38 per cent of those on a dial-up connection.

Additionally, consumers who go online via broadband are five times more likely than dial-up users to access more than one type of media simultaneously.

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