How are consumers accessing content?

The internet has changed the way in which brands connect with target audiences. Video is now one of the most effective ways of engaging with online users. According to research from technology company Cisco, video will account for 69% of all consumer internet traffic by 2017, and video-on-demand traffic will have almost trebled.

If you are looking to incorporate video to your content marketing strategies, you not only have to devise entertaining or informative content, you also have to take into consideration the devices that your audiences will be using to watch your videos.

People’s changing preferences to the devices they use to access online content has had a direct impact on how Google ranks sites. In April this year, Google rolled out what many have come to know as "mobilegeddon", where an algorithm update was implemented that was designed to favour sites that are optimised for the mobile internet.

To find out how different demographics watch content online, video production company Hyperfine Media, recently asked people across the UK what device they use the most to watch video.

The results reveal that 41.6% of the British public prefer to watch online videos on a desktop, 32.3% prefer to watch on a smartphone and 26.1% choose to view this content on a tablet. There are, however, clear trends reflected in the various age demographics of the respondents.

The Top Responses

Although watching video online was the overall top response in the survey data, as well as with both males (45.4%) and females (39.3%), there was a clear divide in preference between people aged below and over 35.

The survey data reveals that people under the age of 35 have a preference towards watching online video via their smartphones. Almost half of 18 to 24 year olds (47.8%) chose a smartphone as their preferred device, as well as 42% of 25 to 34 year olds. Yet desktop was the most popular choice amongst 35 to 44 year olds (40.3%), 45 to 54 year olds (42.9%), 55 to 64 year olds (53.3%) and people aged over 65 (51.4%).

No matter what target audience you’re looking to engage with, it’s imperative that you understand their online behaviours and preferences so that you not only create content that suits their needs, but that you also distribute these assets in the most effective way to reach your audience.


Hyperfine Media conducted a survey of 1,000 people across the UK asking “What device do you use the most to watch video online”. The survey was performed using Google Consumer Surveys and included respondents from England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Written by Garth Haley, corporate videographer, editor and animator at Hyperfine Media

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