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Radio Listening Dwarfs Time Spent with TV Connected Devices


According to Nielsen audience measurement data, adults 18 and older in the U.S. spend just shy of six hours (5 hours, 51 minutes) with their TV-connected devices each week. But that's dwarfed by the amount of time Americans spend with traditional radio, as the medium commands nearly 12 hours (11 hours, 51 minutes) of the weekly media diet -- that's almost four hours more than a typical work day.

At a broad level, the News/Talk format remains the most popular genre on the radio -- a designation it's held for nearly a decade. AC and Country are also top genres among adults, but their trajectories are heading in different directions as AC is growing and Country is declining. Among younger listeners, Pop Contemporary Hit Radio (CHR) and Urban Contemporary are most popular choices, while AC and Pop CHR are the top two genres among the 25-54 crowd.

The charts below break down the national listening landscape for the 10 most popular radio formats of 2018 in Nielsen's PPM markets using Average Quarter-Hour (AQH) share.

The charts below break down the national listening landscape for the 10 most popular radio formats of 2018 in Nielsen's PPM markets using Average Quarter-Hour (AQH) share.

Persons 6+

Top Radio Formats (Jan-Nov avg) 2017 2018 2019
News/Talk 9.9% 10.0% 9.5%
AC 7.7% 8.0% 8.1%
Country 7.6% 7.3% 6.7%
Pop CHR 7.6% 6.9% 6.5%
Classic Hits 5.3% 5.6% 5.8%
Classic Rock 5.4% 4.9% 5.1%
Hot AC 5.9% 5.5% 5.0%
Urban AC 4.8% 4.8% 4.7%
All Sports 4.3% 4.4% 4.3%
Urban Contemporary 3.8% 3.6% 3.6%
Mexican Regional 3.6% 3.3% 3.0%
Alternative 2.7% 3.1% 2.9%
Spanish Contemporary 2.8% 2.9% 2.7%
Contemporary Christian 2.8% 2.7% 2.5%
Rhythmic CHR 2.6% 2.6% 2.5%

Persons 18-34

Top Radio Formats (Jan-Nov avg) 2017 2018 2019
Pop CHR 11.6% 10.7% 10.1%
Country 8.4% 8.5% 7.7%
AC 7.2% 7.7% 7.6%
Urban Contemporary 6.8% 6.4% 6.1%
Hot AC 6.8% 6.4% 5.9%
Alternative 4.9% 5.2% 4.7%
Rhythmic CHR 5.1% 4.9% 4.6%
Classic Hits 3.8% 4.3% 4.5%
Classic Rock 4.6% 4.2% 4.5%
News/Talk 4.4% 4.3% 4.3%
Spanish Contemporary 3.2% 3.6% 3.7%
Urban AC 3.3% 3.3% 3.5%
All Sports 3.4% 3.3% 3.2%
Mexican Regional 4.6% 4.0% 2.8%
Contemporary Christian 2.3% 2.3% 2.4%

Persons 25-54

Top Radio Formats (Jan-Nov avg) 2017 2018 2019
AC 7.4% 7.9% 7.7%
Pop CHR 8.5% 8.0% 7.6%
Country 7.3% 7.0% 6.8%
News/Talk 7.4% 7.0% 6.7%
Hot AC 6.7% 6.1% 5.5%
Classic Hits 4.8% 5.1% 5.3%
Classic Rock 5.5% 4.8% 5.0%
All Sports 4.7% 4.8% 4.5%
Urban Contemporary 4.5% 4.4% 4.5%
Urban AC 4.5% 4.4% 4.3%
Alternative 3.7% 4.1% 3.9%
Mexican Regional 4.5% 4.3% 3.8%
Spanish Contemporary 3.1% 3.4% 3.3%
Rhythmic CHR 3.0% 3.1% 3.1%
Adult Hits 3.0% 2.6% 2.5%

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