Entertainment News, Nation, (Mumbai), May 8:-Television viewership declined during the week ended May 1 but was up 29 per cent compared to pre-lockdown days, the Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) said on Thursday.
The total television viewership declined by 1 per cent to 1.14 trillion viewing minutes as against the previous reporting week.
However, it was an increase of 29 per cent compared to week ended March 20.
The nationwide lockdown, which began on March 25, resulted in increased television watching in India across genres as people were forced to be indoors. News and movies genres grew the most, but the launch of Hindu mythology-based content like Ramayan also pushed the viewership of the general entertainment channels which were struggling for fresh content since there is no new productions.
For the reporting week ended May 1, viewership in both the prime time as well as the non-prime time fell as compared to the preceding week, BARC said, adding that watching was largely on account of news and movies channels.
In an interesting data point, the body said that since the onset of the lockdown, news channels witnessed 13 per cent new watchers who had not cared to watch the channels for the first six weeks of the year at all.
Even though the viewership has been high, the advertising time continued to show disappointing trends but there was an increase in the number of brands who are advertising.
In the weekly series of data shared by marketing research firm AC Nielsen based on smartphone usage of 1 lakh Indians using the Android operating system, it showed a drastic increase across the country with people in the age group of 15-45 spending nearly four hours on their phones. It is also the highest amount of screen time recorded since the lockdown began.
The lockdown has been imposed to curb spreading of coronavirus infections.
-(NAV, Inputs: Agencies)