Microsoft: Lots of PC owners use more than one device at once

If you own a PC, a smartphone, game console, tablet or TV, there's a good chance that you use more than one of those devices at the same time. That's the conclusion of a new study that was recently commissioned by Microsoft Advertising.

The Microsoft Advertising blog reveals the main bullet points of the study, which shows that 68 percent of the PC owners who were surveyed have taken part in the most common form of this trend, called "content grazing." Microsoft says this happens when a person uses at least two screens, but their activities are unrelated to each other. For example, people might watch television while using their notebook on the couch to check their email.

Of those surveyed, 57 percent take part in what Microsoft calls "investigative spider-webbing," when they see something on one screen and try to look up more information on the first screen's content on a second device. One of the most common examples is watching a movie on TV and then looking up information on that movie on a PC, smartphone or tablet.

Another second-screen experience is called "quantum journey," where two screens are used, but not at the same time, for a related task. Microsoft says 46 percent of its survey respondents claim to take part in this activity. "For example, you snap a picture of a pair of shoes on your mobile that you see for sale while shopping, and then look up reviews about the shoes on your PC at home before purchasing," the report states.

Finally, the survey showed that 39 percent of PC users use two or more screens for "social spider-webbing," when someone takes part in an activity on one screen, such as playing a game on a game console, and then goes to another device to talk about their play accomplishments with their friends (such as on Facebook or Skype).

Microsoft has its own mobile second-screen app, Xbox SmartGlass, where iOS, Android, Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 device owners can connect to the Xbox 360 console for various functions. Microsoft Advertising is looking to see how such experiences could be used by companies to promote their products. Naturally, it's also interested in promoting its own advertising venues to those companies as well.

Source: Microsoft Advertising | Image via Microsoft

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My main PC is in the living room connected to the big screen. It's not an ideal for webcam.. I have a laptop that takes care of that. While I'm with my gal on cam, I'm doing some other stuff on the main. Music's playin, typing stuff etc.. Yep, that's me. Sometimes I'll grab the tablet for some strange reason..

Further indication that Windows-8 with its obsession to touch-screen oriented UI becomes further irrelevant. Why did Microsoft make such a mess for itself when it abandoned the concept of user-selectable UI with its Windows-8??

THANKS FOR HIJACKING THREAD TO POST SOME STUPID W8 HATE. Just because your brain cant handle the beauty of change doesn't mean ours cant.

I occasionally use both my PCs at once. Usually because with cloud storage and web stuff I can flick between the desktop and laptop form factors and take what I'm doing with me very quickly then come back and carry on.

Wait a minute. This has to be false. According to Apple, PC owners are dumb. How can they operate more than 1 device at a time. /s

The PCvsMac commercials poked fun at the PC itself (and the Windows OS running on it at the time) , not at the owners. The two main characters from the commercials literally represented a Mac and PC. Never mind that the PC character was actually kind of lovable (arguably more so than the Mac character). Ads that DID feature potential customers didn't make fun of them as far as I can see:

Now here on the other hand is a company ACTUALLY making fun of the owners of devices from another company, so you can see the difference:

The PC vs Mac commercials were largely unsuccessful because they were geared towards Apple enthusiasts. They inadvertently are telling you the typical Mac user is hip and cool while the PC user is an unattractive, blubbering idiot. Why couldn't the Mac be a short fat guy with all these points that the Mac had then? If you can't answer that , my point is valid.

The Samsung commercials were no different than Mac vs PC commercials. The only difference is Samsung's were funny. It showed valid points. iPhone users are just addicted to having an iDevice and are still waiting for the next big thing. Most of my friends who have iPhone's brag about their turn by turn navigation, clicking on a number in a web page dials it for you. Clicking on an address in a web page takes you to the maps application; clicking on an email takes you to the email app and their 4G LTE. I stare at them and say, I have had that for a few years now dude? When I was bragging about 4G LTE on my phone a year and half before the iPhone got it, they said nobody needs it. So yes, the Samsung commercials were perfect.

Last year Apple had an ad campaign that was a huge failure because they portrayed their own users as stupid with the so-called Apple boy genius commercials.

Signed a guy who owns an Android, iPhone, Mac and PC.

Sonne said,
Movie playing on my tablet, typing this on my laptop while texting on my phone
Same here (sort of). Typing this on my Surface while listening to a Podcast on my smartphone while laying next to my wife whose watching a movie on my Xbox.

Sonne said,
Movie playing on my tablet, typing this on my laptop while texting on my phone

So you're using 3 devices for what could easily be done with one...

Yup. And I hope they do keep upgrading Smartglass. It's a great start.

In FPS games, you can see your worldwide stats, and your friends'.

I also liked what they did with the Oscars and the real time polls. It felt you were part of the show.

doh!, brilliant discovery Microsoft.

Actually people have been doing exactly the same thing for many years, ever since computers could have multiple screens.

Maybe Microsoft just have discovered people with windows 8 need 2 (or more) computers to do the same thing people with older versions of windows, multi monitors and a mouse, have been doing forever.