CHART OF THE DAY: Why People Watch Video On Their Smartphones


This chart comes from Business Insider Intelligence, a new research and and analysis service focused on the mobile and Internet industries. Sign up for a free trial here.


Video consumption on mobile phones has grown faster than PC video or tablet video in the last year, and 41 million people in the U.S. already watch video on their phones. That contradicts the views of doubters who thought phone screens were just too small for video, or that wireless networks would never support it.

Why are people watching video on their phones?

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They do so for many of the same reasons they play games or listen to music: to relieve boredom or fill time.

And, much as many of us already do with music, smartphone owners use their devices to watch videos they had planned to watch beforehand.


According to the survey from the IAB and On Device Research, some video views are spontaneous, triggered when smartphone users come across video on topics, stars or brands that they already know they like.

There is a common denominator to smartphone video — most sessions are short. Only 40 percent of smartphone video sessions globally are over ten minutes in length, according to Ooyala, a global digital video streaming platform.

"The vast majority of people are still snacking on video with their smartphones," Ooyala CEO Bismarck Lepe told us. The company forecasts video consumption on smartphones will surge by a factor of 10 in the next five years.