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New Ofcom research shows stark differences in World Cup viewing behaviour across generations

A new survey of UK adults conducted by Ofcom reveals significant differences in World Cup viewing behaviour across age groups. According to the UK media regulator, only 51% of people aged 18-24 intend to watch whole games live on TV compared to 76% of those aged 55 or older. Twice as many young people said they’ll keep up via updates on social media – 28% versus 14%. Young people are also significantly more likely to watch games on laptops or tablets (29%) compared to those aged 55+ (14%).

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 A new survey of 2000 UK adults conducted by Ofcom reveals significant differences in World Cup viewing behaviour across age groups. According to the UK media regulator, only 51% of people aged 18-24 intend to watch whole games live on TV, compared to 76% of those aged 55 or older.

Twice as many young people said they will keep up via updates on social media – 28% versus 14%. Young people are also significantly more likely to watch matches in public spaces (such as pubs) with 38% saying they would, compared to only 13% of those aged 55 or older.

Overall across all age groups, 78% of respondents said they plan to follow whole games, with 69% saying they would be doing so on TV – the device of choice across all generations. According to Ofcom, almost half overall said they will only watch the tournament on TV and no other devices.

But the survey reveals significant differences between the age groups in terms of specific media and devices people plan to use. Ofcom notes: “More than twice as many of th[e] younger age group said they’d be using a laptop or tablet – 29% compared to 14% of over-55s. There was also a difference in age groups for those who plan to keep up using their smartphone to watch games, with more than three times as many younger people than older people saying they’d be doing this – 34% versus 10%.”

According to the media regulator, three times as many younger people said they would be using ‘watch along’ channels on YouTube and other platforms – 12% versus 3%. And twice as many younger people said they would be using dedicated apps to keep up with the matches – 26% compared to 13% of those aged 55+.

More than twice as many younger people than older people said they will be using social channels at the same time as they are watching the live action on TV – 42% compared to 16%.


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