Nov 11 | By Nickolas Anderson
Whether we’re tuning in to the big game, catching up on the news, or starting a new season of a popular series, watching TV and streaming online are two of the primary forms of entertainment in the US.
However, that doesn’t mean we’re all watching the same amount.
With more and more exciting new shows coming out every year, there’s always something to watch, so we decided to see which states have their eyes glued to the TV the most and the least. See where your state falls on this year’s list, and see if anything has changed since last year’s report.
- Every state experienced a decrease in watch time this year.
- West Virginia watched the most TV this year, despite a 74% decrease in watch time.
- Mississippi, which stole the top spot from West Virginia last year, decreased watch time by 55%, making it the state with the eighth highest TV viewing time.
- Delaware had the biggest decrease in watch time at 77% but still had the fifth highest average watch time.
- Sports was the most searched genre in 11 states, topping more states than news, cartoons, and sitcoms.
- Alaska kept its spot from last year as the state that watched the least TV and even decreased the watch time to one hour and 34 minutes.
- Cartoons were searched most in both West Virginia and Alaska, the states with highest and lowest average TV watching time.
The 10 States with the Highest TV Watch Time
Two new states made it into the top 10 this year, Delaware and North Dakota, which bumped Georgia and Michigan from the list. The other eight states all moved places slightly, except for Kentucky, which retained its spot with the seventh highest watch time. West Virginia reclaimed its number one spot from two years ago, bumping Mississippi out of first place.
The 10 States with the Lowest TV Watch Time
Alaska and Utah both kept their spots from last year with the first and second lowest TV watch times. Seven of the ten states that watched the least TV are in the western US, with only Minnesota, D.C., and Massachusetts falling on or east of the Mississippi river. Oregon and Colorado were both bumped off the list this year by the addition of Massachusetts and D.C.
TV Viewership in All 50 States
(51 = most amount of TV watched, 1 = least)
|Rank||State||TV Hours||TV Minutes||Average Hr:Min:Sec Watched in a Day||Genre|
|47||Delaware||3.40||204.02||3:24:01||Children's television series|
|4||District of Columbia||2.33||139.85||2:19:51||Children's television series|
|12||New Hampshire||2.57||154.12||2:34:07||Children's television series|
|31||North Carolina||2.88||172.87||2:52:52||Reality television|
|35||Wyoming||2.94||176.33||2:56:20||Late-night talk show|
We used the historical TV watch time data from the ATUS years 2003-2019 to forecast state-level estimates for the 2020 piece. Each state’s most searched TV genre was determined using search data from Google Trends over the past year (9/16/20 – 9/16/21). Ranking is based on states that watch the most TV. We included all the states in the US and the District of Columbia but didn’t include Puerto Rico.
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