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Mobile Devices Causing Greater News Consumption

The Pew Research Centre has just published its 2012 State of the News Media report, bringing forth some interesting information when it comes to digital news.

The report is a comprehensive analysis of journalism in the US, taking into account eight media sectors and the defining trends therein. The most interesting facet of the study is the impact of mobile devices on news consumption - and the fact that owners of multiple pieces of hardware are consuming stories across all their devices.

For example, 34 per cent of those who read online news on their desktop or laptop PC also peruse the headlines on their smartphone. 17 per cent of desktop readers admit to taking in the news on a tablet, too.

A greater percentage of smartphone owners, 27 per cent, also gobble up news stories on their tablet. And 5% of those questioned admitted to using all three devices to keep up to date with what's happening in the world.

Broadly, the increased proliferation of smartphones and tablets isn't leading people to abandon their desktop PC for news browsing, rather, it's encouraging a greater uptake of news consumption on a more regular basis.

Pew Research notes: "Rather than replacing media consumption on digital devices, people who go mobile are getting news on all their devices. They also appear to be getting it more often, and reading for longer periods of time."

The study of 3,000 US adults also pointed to established brand reputation as being the most important factor in determining where people went for their online news. Friend recommendations of stories still aren't regarding as a "major factor" in directing net news traffic, despite the undoubted popularity of social networks these days.