Big screen TVs have helped to bring families together, a new Office of Communications (Ofcom) report suggests.
With families increasingly likely to have a huge screen in the family living room, children are no longer heading upstairs to watch TV on their computers or bedroom tellys. Instead, kids are joining mum and dad downstairs for the big screen experience.
More than a third of TVs sold in Britain in the first three months of 2011 had 33in screens or bigger.
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People are also watching TV for longer. Families spent on average four hours a day watching TV in 2011, up from 3.6 hours in 2002. This is bad news for our waistlines and may mean that though families are spending time together in the same room, they’re glued to a (big) screen rather than interacting or getting active playing sports or games.
"Television viewing has been robust between 2002 and 2011," said James Thickett, Ofcom's director of research.
He explains that one of the things that has meant people watch TV for longer is the evolution of television technology.
"In the past ten years we have seen the development of widescreen TV, HD TV, screens getting flatter and very importantly screens are getting bigger,” said Thickett.
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"What this is doing is actually bringing people back into the living room and television is taking on a new role as a family experience, whereas 10 years ago we were seeing kids, different members of the family, watching different television shows in different rooms using different sets.”
If children do want to watch TV separately, they’re more likely to watch it on their laptops than on a different TV screen.
"They're not replacing their TVs in their bedrooms. They're relying on laptops or different screens. We're not going to see that mass adoption of TV screens all around the house”, he said.