April 4, 2011

A Nielsen Table Improved - Number of Americans Watching Mobile Video

A blog post from Nielsen says:

According to a new mobile video report from The Nielsen Company, the number of U.S. mobile subscribers watching video on their mobile devices rose more than 40 percent year-over-year in both the third and fourth quarters of 2010, ending the year at nearly 25 million people.

They presented their results with this table:

What’s wrong here?

  1. Their summary says watching improved in both the third and fourth quarters of 2010, but why isn’t Q3 09 on the table?
  2. Why do they include Q3 10 if they don’t include the quarter to quarter comparison?
  3. The table is quite dark and dreary, with unnecessary color

I would reformat the table like this.

I have:

  1. Added Q3 09 along with quarter over quarter comparisons (% diff on the right) and year over year comparisons (% diff at the bottom)
  2. Removed any unnecessary color

While Nielsen’s report says “the number of U.S. mobile subscribers watching video on their mobile devices rose more than 40 percent year-over-year in both the third and fourth quarters of 2010”, they fail to point out that growth has actually slowed in 2010, both quarter over quarter and year over year.

Bottom line, be careful what you read.  I hope not, but Nielsen may have intentionally left out Q3 09 to paint a better picture.

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