The Infinite Dial 2014

The Infinite Dial 2014, the latest in this long-running series of studies on consumer adoption of digital media, was released today (see below for download information.) This new national survey from Edison Research and Triton Digital found that the weekly audience for all forms of online radio* is now 36% of all Americans age 12 and older, or 94 million nationally.

The study, released today, is the 22nd in a series of studies dating back to 1998. Among the many other findings:

• More than six in ten (61%) now own a smartphone; that number increases to approximately eight in ten age 18-34.

• Internet-only audio services continue to grow, led by Pandora — now consumed by 31% monthly. iTunes Radio debuts in The Infinite Dial with 8% monthly usage.

• Growth in the adoption of the social media platforms Facebook and Twitter has slowed this year, compared with previous editions of The Infinite Dial. Facebook usage is flat compared to 2013, at 58%, while Twitter grew slightly from 15% to 16% year-over-year.

• Podcasting is on the rise, as weekly audio podcast consumption grew 25% year-over-year, from 12% in 2013 to 15% in 2014.

• In-car usage of online radio and other forms of digital audio continues to grow. In 2014, 26% of mobile phone users have connected devices to a vehicle, either physically or via Bluetooth, up from 21% in 2013.

• Snapchat is now one of the leading social networking services; 53% of mobile phone users are familiar with Snapchat, while 13% of Americans 12+ — and 46% of 12-24 year-olds — use the image sharing service.

“The continued penetration of smartphones in America is changing behavior significantly,” noted Tom Webster, Vice President of Strategy and Marketing, Edison Research. “We are now seeing activities that were dominated by desktop usage in 2013, flip dramatically to become mobile behaviors. For millions of Americans, the smartphone has become ‘the first screen.’”

“The Internet of Things means audio in everything internet,” said Mike Agovino, COO, Triton Digital. “Scaling connectivity across a plethora of devices is enabling tremendous growth in online radio consumption. Listening levels have reached significant proportions across all demographic groups, and this year’s Infinite Dial study illustrates a definitive upward trajectory.”

Download The Infinite Dial 2014 from Edison Research and Triton Digital here.

The Infinite Dial 2014 from Tom Webster on Vimeo.

How the Study was Conducted

A total of 2,023 persons were interviewed to explore Americans’ use of digital platforms and new media. From January 13 to February 12, 2014, telephone interviews were conducted with respondents age 12 and older who were selected via Random Digit Dial (RDD) sampling. The study includes a total of 808 cell phone interviews.

About Edison Research:
Edison Research conducts survey research and provides strategic information to a broad array of clients, including Activision, AMC Theatres, Disney, Dolby Laboratories, Google, Gulf News, the U.S. International Broadcasting Bureau, Pandora, Samsung, Siemens, Sony, Time Warner and Yahoo. Edison Research works with many of the largest American radio ownership groups, including Bonneville, Emmis, Entercom, CBS Radio and Radio One. Another specialty for Edison is its work for media companies throughout the world, conducting research in North America, South America, Africa, Asia, and Europe. Edison Research is the sole provider of election exit poll data for the National Election Pool comprised of ABC, CBS, CNN, FOX, NBC and the Associated Press. Edison is also the leading provider of consumer exit polling and has conducted face-to-face research in almost every imaginable venue.

About Triton Digital:
Triton Digital® is a mid-stage technology company focused on the digital audio industry. More leading publishers – including CBS, Pandora, Entercom and Slacker – use the Triton platform to enrich their content and deliver it to a global audience than that of any other company. Triton’s Webcast Metrics product is the MRC-accredited industry standard in digital audio measurement. Its Ad Injector technology delivers billions of impressions to millions of streams each month. Its ad exchange, a2x, is the only programmatic audience buying platform for audio and has broad adoption across both publishers and agencies. Triton Digital creates meaningful, amplified connections between audio, audience, and advertisers.

* Online Radio = Listening to AM/FM radio stations online and/or listening to streamed audio content available only on the Internet.

CRS 2014: #MeetTheMillennials

Edison’s Larry Rosin and Megan Lazovick, along with Jayne Charneski, presented the latest Country music study from Edison Research, #MeetTheMillennials, at the 2014 Country Radio Seminar in Nashville on February 19. The presentation slides are available below.

Edison conducted a national online survey of 1,550 respondents age 12-34 in November 2013. This was followed with in-person interviews of Millennials – those born between 1980 and 2000 – who listen frequently to Country music. The in-person interviews were conducted in cities across the country.

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Eight in Ten Millennials Listen to Internet Radio

Last fall, Edison Research debuted “The New Mainstream”, a research project performed on behalf of the Streaming Audio Task Force – a consortium of Pandora, Spotify, and TuneIn.  Now, Edison is pleased to follow up with a new report showing the results of the study among 18-34s.

The changes happening in media consumption are vastly more pronounced in the younger age groups.  Our study of online 18-34s shows that in every location of listening outside of the car, online 18-34s are more likely to listen to online radio (including the streams of AM/FM stations) than radio from a traditional transmitter.  Of course, the change in consumption is being driven primarily by the adoption of smart phones.

As shown by other studies – Internet Radio usage does not lead to a wholesale abandonment of ‘traditional’ radio – indeed 89% of 18-34s reported listening to over-the-air radio stations in the week before they were surveyed.  The advent of Internet Radio has surely led to some time-shifting from one form to the other, but meaningfully there is little doubt that Online delivery has expanded the time people spend with audio.

Edison18-34 audio infographic-2

The New Mainstream 2013: New Research Into Streaming Audio

Edison Research, in partnership with Pandora, Spotify and TuneIn, released a groundbreaking new study of Internet radio usage and adoption, “The New Mainstream: 2013,” on September 24th at Advertising Week in New York City. This online study of 3,016 persons 12+ revealed who these Americans are, how they are using Internet radio, and where Internet radio’s place is in mainstream media consumption.

Principal findings of the study included the following:

• The majority of online Americans 12+ – 53% – currently ever use Internet radio.

• Internet radio is the third most popular way that people discover new music, ahead of Amazon, YouTube, Social Media and other sources.

• 63% of Internet radio listeners own a smartphone–and 83% of smartphone owners listen to some kind of Internet radio on their mobile devices.

• 32% of Internet radio listeners indicated that they are listening to “a lot” more of the medium than they were one year ago

• 26% of Internet Radio users tell us that their listening is mostly ‘new time’ – time not previously filled with audio of any kind

Presentation Slides




What’s Working at Work – New Research on Workplace Radio Listening

Edison Research has updated one of its original, landmark studies–the 1997 At-Work Listening study–for 2013. This new study premiered at The Radio Show, presented by the National Association of Broadcasters and the Radio Advertising Bureau, on September 20th, 2013.

Edison conducted an online survey of 1043 adults, ages 18 and older, who are employed either full or part time. Respondents were asked a variety of questions about their workplace listening habits, including types of radio consumed, devices used for listening, commercials and more. The study was sponsored by Radionomy.


Video Interviews

In addition to the online survey, Edison also conducted interviews in a variety of workplace environments in order to gain qualitative insight into how radio is being used at work. The following videos summarize Edison’s principal findings.




At-work Listening Options



Devices Used at Work



Purpose of Audio at Work



What’s Good About AM/FM at Work?