NRS figures show print still beats digital for British newspaper and magazine readers

Richard Stuart-Turner
Thursday, August 27, 2015

The latest National Readership Survey (NRS) figures have highlighted the continued high consumption of newspapers and magazines in Great Britain.

The organisation released its latest set of annual mobile and tablet estimates of audience readership, alongside its quarterly print, and print and digital data (PADD) results yesterday.

The figures reveal that 94% of adults in Great Britain, defined as those aged at least 15, are reached by news brand or magazine media content every month through print, PC, mobile and tablet consumption.

And they also show print is still the most popular way to read newspapers and magazines. The survey found 83% (42.8 million) of British adults read a print newspaper or magazine every month, down marginally from 43.3 million in the previous period, while 72% consume newspaper or magazine brand content via their PC or mobile devices.

The mobile and tablet estimates are published for 26 major brands while the PADD survey, which encompasses total print and digital consumption, shows the size and nature of the audiences of 250 of the country’s biggest news brands and magazines.

On average, mobile and tablet consumption boosts the market reach of the 26 brands measured in this way by 64% of the market share achieved by their print edition.

The split between newspapers and magazines shows that 90% of British adults aged 15 or over consume news brands across print and digital compared with 73% who consume magazines across both channels.

On average, mobile consumption adds a 78% audience reach to that of individual news brands and 50% to individual magazine brands.

NRS said the data shows the almost ubiquitous reach of published media. Research manager David Hart said: “Print consumption shows a fairly consistent figure while digital, mobile and tablet consumption continues to increase.

“With each release we see a very slight decline in the print figures but those numbers are still very high and do in most cases still account for the bulk of the consumption for a lot of the brands.”

The data set shows NRS PADD readership data for the period from July 2014 to June 2015, incorporating June 2015 comScore data. 

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