News Consumption in an era of ‘Multi-Screen Experiences’
Screens seem to have invaded every facet of human lives in the past decade. People today begin and end their day accessing some screen or the other. As you will be aware, screens come in various shapes, sizes and formats spanning mobile phones, tablets, televisions, laptops, etc. Now picture the all-pervasive impact of these screens in your lives. Truth be told, this trend is very much here to stay and will only flourish further as we progress. What this has prompted is a phenomenon also known as the ‘Multi-Screen Experience’.
The Multi-Screen phenomena comes with its own idiosyncrasies with features like sequential screening and simultaneous screening, thereby allowing users to read at their own convenience, be it time or place. Studies suggest that on an average people are fond of three different combinations of screens. 81% of the crowd use both Smartphone and TV and 66% use Smartphone and laptops and 66% use laptop and TV, and with the Smartphone being the most favorite and frequent companion used across devices for simultaneous usage.
Consuming News on a device
One of the biggest fallouts of the multi-screen phenomena is the way in which news is being consumed. Information as a result is always just a click away. Breaking news from anywhere around the world reaches the other corner in the blink of an eye. Internet technologies on screens proffers you with comprehensive data allowing you to consume news while you are always in control. The platform serves the needs of one and all, providing a host of features such as language filters, local newspaper content and the choice of preferential content. It also gives the users scope to interact anytime anywhere, helping make the world an interconnected global village.
Over the years there has also been drastic change in news consumption as well as dissemination patterns. Resulting in an increase in news consumption across varied formats. This is no doubt the result of technological advances which is making our lives much faster and efficient than ever before. Thanks to internet technologies, today one can stay connected at any point of time in the day and from anywhere, even in remote jungles and far flung areas.
I am sure each and every one of us have our own individualistic preference when it comes to our choice of news. It spans language, location, religion, politics, education, etc and the list goes on. And a screen or device therein allows you to take control of consuming this news with various filters such type of news, journalist, source, format, geography, etc. In addition to this, machine learning technologies will provide you with the exact stream of news that you prefer under each of these verticals.
Rise of the E-Paper
Accessibility to e-papers has brought in another refreshing wave of change for the die-hard news consumer. Be it topical news or entertainment, business news or lifestyle one can access it all at the same time and in its original form. Imagine a multi-screen experience of reading your favourite newspaper in its original form. Well that’s the new trend taking the world by storm. This is of particular importance to the Indian diaspora which represents over 23 official languages and an approximate 100,000 plus registered newspapers in India. Home sick and weary people away from their native land often feel comforted when they get a flavor of their favourite daily newspaper each day on their screens.
Interactive capabilities of a screen
When compared to earlier forms, multi-screen allows users to be proactive rather than remaina passive audience. Online news access gives people an option to get an in-depth understanding into any topic of their choice by simply digging deeper. The continuous flow of content has made the medium responsive and opinion forming at the same time. The interactive capabilities of a screens is hence another key driver in people embracing this trend wholeheartedly. From keyboards to screen pens to touch screens, technology on the screen is evolving each day. The interactive nature of the screen is therefore making its applications addictive. Since the user can take control of the interaction, it allows them to access deep domains of information while interacting with other likeminded users through social media and interactive platforms.
The Multi Screen Experience is merely the fall out of various developments in multimedia technologies around the globe. Along with the advent of the Internet, it has spawned a variety of trends that are habit forming and game changing at the same time. The interactive quality of screens, the way we consume news, the way we socialise through social media platforms and the way we communicate is bound to only transform further with each and every passing day.
Let us brace ourselves and embrace this phenomenon as the popular saying goes – ‘Change is the only Constant’.