The internet revolution has enveloped television viewers too, as one in nine British households is watching television over the internet, says a new report.
Ofcom, the industry regulator, the number of homes logging on to view soap operas, sport, documentaries and other programmes has almost doubled in the past year from 1.57 million to 2.96 million.
AdvertisementThe report reflects how digital technology revolutionises viewing habits, and discloses that the growth of the internet and mobile phones has more than compensated for the slow decline in traditional television, radio and landline telephone calls.
This take-off of television programmes on the Internet has emerged since the relaunch of the BBC iPlayer at the end of 2007, what with popular shows including The Apprentice, Dr Who, Top Gear and Gavin and Stacey attracting millions of viewers.
According to the BBC, every day 70,000 people download programmes from their service, and a similar trend is seen in case of ITV and Channel 4.
Experts say that fast broadband connections have turned online television from a juddery, frustrating viewing experience to a telecast as clear as watching a set with an aerial.
"The big thing that is driving this phenomenon is broadband connections, which the majority of people did not have a few years ago. That's changed," The Telegraph quoted Peter Philips, a partner at Ofcom, as saying.
In fact, a major technological advantage with online television is that viewers can actually choose the programmes when they want, and not when the broadcaster wants to air them.
Dan Cryan, an analyst at Screen Digest, said: "Being able to sit down and browse through pretty much all the programmes that have been broadcast over the last week and pick and choose which one to watch is really useful.
"It's a different experience from watching programmes at the scheduled time."