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The figures show UK viewers watched 4 hours, 4 minutes of TV a day on average in 2012, with viewing via digital platforms just 3 minutes a day on average according to BARB.

UK audiences watched an average of 4 hours, 1 minute a day of linear TV in 2012, an average daily drop of one minute from 2011, with commercial programming claiming a 66 per cent of total viewing numbers.

The latest statistics were also the first to measure TV audiences via connected devices, such as smartphones, laptops and iPads, using Thinkbox data in a bid to better quantify ‘time-shift’ TV viewing.

An average of three minutes of TV was viewed each day in this way, most of which was on-demand, with BARB speculating the availability of on-demand services via TV sets such as Sky+ and Virgin Media’s TiVo accounting for the comparatively low figure.

The figures further reveal 81 per cent of all ‘time-shifted’ viewing is watched within seven days of recording, with 47 per cent viewed within 24 hours.

All figures on TV viewing in 2012 will be published in Thinkbox’s Annual Review, which will be available at the beginning of March.