I pride myself in being the consummate multitasker. I can juggle a phone call and frying pan while emptying the contents of my kids’ school backpacks all while keeping an eye on the dog in the back yard.
It’s a skill that most working mothers like me have down to science and don’t mind rubbing our husband’s noses in it. (Guys, maneuvering a riding lawn mower while drinking doesn’t come close to what we girls can do.)
According to a survey from In-Stat, however, women no longer own the only bragging rights being the best multitaskers. It seems that men rule the roost when it comes to simultaneous surfing of a PC and TV. Based on In-Stat’s survey, 33 percent of all male respondents, across all age groups, reported that they sometimes use a personal computer while watching TV. Among some male age groups the behavior was a high as 50 percent.
Women, on the other hand, demonstrate simultaneous PC and TV usage less often, with 25 percent of the survey respondents admitting to the behavior. Taken as a whole, both men and women represent more than 66 million consumers who use the Internet while camped out on their sofas.
According to In-Stat analyst Gerry Kaufhold, the findings represent huge opportunities for the TV industry. “Local TV stations, TV networks, pay-TV networks, 24-hour news networks, sports leagues, and music channels can instantly connect to some of their viewers on both the TV screen and on a laptop computer screen.”
Once those applications start filtering into households, will men still be the primary practitioners? I guess that depends what benefits the blended PC/TV experience will provide. If in sitting through one episode of my favorite HGTV show I’ll be able to knock several things off my to-do list—order plants for the garden, pick out a paint color for the bathroom and find a good landscaper—faster than my husband can take out the trash.
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Lisa Montgomery has been writing about home technology for 15 years, with a focus on the impact of electronics on a modern lifestyle.