NEW YORK (AP) — The number of U.S. homes that don't get traditional television service continues to increase, but that doesn't mean they don't have TVs.
The Nielsen company said in a report issued on Tuesday that three-quarters of the estimated 5 million homes that don't get TV signals over the airways or through cable, satellite or telecommunications companies have televisions anyway.
Many of these homes are satisfied to use their TVs for games or get programming through DVDs or services like Netflix or Apple TV, said Dounia Turrill, senior vice president for client insights at Nielsen.
The company's report shows how the nature of TV service is slowly changing. Before the percentage started declining about three years ago, more than 99 percent of TV homes received the traditional TV signals. Now that has dipped just below 96 percent.
Part of the decline is also economic — service deemed expendable by people struggling to make ends meet, Nielsen said.
Because of the changes, Nielsen is considering redefining what it considers a television household to include people who get service through Netflix or similar services instead of the traditional TV signals, Turrill said.