News key TV consumption driver, but declines on weekly performance

News key TV consumption driver, but declines on weekly performance

Hindi news channels fell by over 11 per cent while English by 4 per cent in week 16


MUMBAI: For the straight sixth week, the news genre continues to be the television consumption driver; it has grown by over 160 per cent in the week 16, says the sixth edition joint report of Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India – Nielsen India. However, the news broadcasters continue to fall marginally in terms of viewership week-on-week basis.

This week, the Hindi news channels fell by over 11 per cent while English dropped by 4 per cent. The COVID period has given news channels an upper hand to gain in viewership than other genres but has been failing to sustain its weekly performance and tumbled for the straight fourth week now.

Slipping to the fourth spot from the second, ABP News fell most of the top five Hindi news channels by over 20 per cent to 211,859 weekly impressions in week 16. While despite being the most-watched channel for the sixteenth week in a row, Aaj Tak declined by over 15 per cent to 295700 weekly impressions in week 16, followed by Zee News, which slumped by 13 per cent in the current week to 211294 impressions. Zee Media’s Hindi news channel has retained its position in the top five list.

Retaining its third position, India TV fell marginally by over 6 per cent to 233, 017 weekly impressions in week 16. For the first time so far this year, Republic Bharat has outperformed all its peers except Aaj Tak to become the second most-watched Hindi news channel with almost the same viewership numbers that of last week. It secured 244,354 weekly impressions in week 16. The channel’s prime-time debate show Poochta Hai Bharat has become most-watched in terms of viewership in week 16.

The English news channels reported a mixed performance in the current week as three news channels out of the top five registered marginal growth, while the other two fell substantially.

Republic TV, Times Now, and CNN-News18 grew marginally this week by over seven, five, and six per cent respectively as compared to week 15.  Republic TV has continued its dominance of being the most-watched English news channel, followed by Times Now, which had slipped to third position last week, has regained its second position week 16. CNN-News18 failed to get featured last week in the top five English news channels and has reclaimed its stand at the fourth position in the current week.

Zee Media’s English news channel WION, securing the fifth position in the top five list, has tumbled substantially by over 30 per cent in terms of viewership. The channels gained 415 impressions in week 16 as compared to 600 impressions in the previous week. While India Today fall back to its third position after climbing one spot up, it declined by over 18 per cent to 837 weekly impressions in the current week as compared to 1031 impressions in the earlier week of BARC.

BARC-Nielsen India has been coming up with television and digital consumption report every week. The report compares the current lockdown period to week two to four (11-31 January) of BARC, which is termed as pre-Covid2019 period.

Says the sixth edition of BARC-Nielsen report: “News enjoys a higher share in megacities in week 16 in the premium panel;  its viewership during prime-time across megacities is higher.” It further adds that the ad volume in news genre by language grew marginally as against pre-Covid2019 period, the highest growth is registered in Hindi, English, Gujarati and Oriya news market