Thought Leadership
eMarketer, Starcom Worldwide, GlobalWebIndex Release 10th Annual Report on State of Global Media Landscape
Published on October 19, 2020
Categories Thought Leadership

eMarketer, in collaboration with Starcom Worldwide and GlobalWebIndex (GWI), has published its annual “Global Media Intelligence (GMI) Report” on key digital trends worldwide, designed for business executives who require benchmarks to support their decisions for global initiatives. Each year, marketers anticipate the report’s release to include as a core part of their planning processes for the upcoming year.

This year’s report includes the following findings and key themes:

  • Ownership of PCs and/or tablets continues to fall in many countries. Smartphones are already the primary—and sometimes the only—digital device owned by many internet users around the world. As advanced handsets continue to consolidate that position, larger-screen devices may appear destined for a secondary role.

  • Digital video continues to close the gap with broadcast TV. The share of internet users watching digital video, either free or paid-for, now equals or surpasses the share watching live TV. In particular, GWI found sizable year-on-year increases in penetration of subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) in many markets, likely driven by consumers’ desire for quality entertainment during mandated lockdowns.

  • While digital viewing is advancing by leaps and bounds, many digital devices and services have seen only modest take-up, and that may be stalling. In 2019, the vast majority of internet users polled didn’t own a smartwatch or a smart wristband; this year, the picture is much the same. To date, smart home devices, such as household energy monitors or security systems linked to mobile apps, aren’t a priority purchase —though increased home working may change that dynamic if the pandemic continues for some time.

  • COVID-19 is likely accelerating the decline of print media. While print audiences aren’t shrinking everywhere, print newspapers and magazines did register many of the most dramatic decreases in media engagement this year.

“In 2020, we’ve been fortunate to collaborate again with Starcom and GWI, whose data provides a comprehensive and detailed picture of internet users’ media consumption and device ownership in key markets around the world,” said eMarketer principal analyst Karin von Abrams.  “Because the metrics and methodology are consistent, we can offer precise year-over-year comparisons; these provide vital indicators of where change is happening, and how quickly. For example, one of the major shifts we noticed this year was a big increase in subscription video viewing in many countries—not at all surprising, given that COVID-19 meant long periods when many people were stuck at home.”

We have expanded coverage this year to include Israel. For each market, traditional and digital media behaviors and mobile and nonmobile device penetration rates are available, along with demographic breakouts by age, gender and income or socio-economic group.

“When, where and how people consume media continues to evolve, and this was of no exception in 2020 as a global pandemic altered our daily routines and way of life,” said Kelly Kokonas, EVP, Global Data, Technology & Analytics, Starcom Worldwide. “From emerging markets to industrialized nations, this report provides deep, cross-market insights on how people of all demographics and backgrounds are empowered by technology and experiencing their world in new ways.”

The GMI Report is eMarketer’s largest, most comprehensive snapshot of the current state of media consumption worldwide, covering 42 countries in six major regions—Asia-Pacific, Central & Eastern Europe, Latin America, Middle East and Africa, North America and Western Europe. In addition, this year’s report contains nearly 500 charts for all local markets—based on data which Starcom and GlobalWebIndex helped identify and gather through its global network —in addition to benchmarks, analysis and context provided by eMarketer.

“In country after country, the coronavirus pandemic has accelerated key trends that should be on every marketer’s radar – smartphones, music streaming, and smart home products continue to rise,” said GWI Chief Research Officer Jason Mander. “Subscription video is seeing one of the biggest increases of all, propelled by in-home orders and the arrival of the likes of Disney+ and AppleTV+. More traditional devices and formats like print media have struggled to keep pace but remain stronger among older and wealthier demographics. This report investigates all of this and more to show what the global picture actually looks like in the new normal.”

To view the executive summary of the report, please see here. The full report is available to eMarketer subscribers. 


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