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Nielsen: Radio reaches 90% of Americans each week

RadioEntertainmentCommutingArbitron Incorporated

Amid a rapidly evolving media landscape, radio remains a constant in Americans' daily lives, according to a new report from Nielsen.

Ninety percent of Americans listen to AM or FM radio each week, with the average listener tuning in for more than two hours a day for news, sports, music, talk and traffic updates. 

Roughly two-thirds of listening occurs out of the home, Nielsen found, with tune-in rising to a plateau during the morning commute, peaking at noon and tapering off in the evening. 

The most avid listeners also seek out online radio -- especially a young generation dubbed the millennials. The biggest bulge of AM/FM radio aficionados are ages 45 to 55, who account for 19% of listeners.

As a group, African Americans spend the most time tuned to radio: nearly 63 hours a month.

Nielsen for the first time incorporated radio listening habits in its quarterly Cross-Platform Report, reflecting its purchase in September of the radio audience measurement firm Arbitron. The report tracks media consumption on TV, online and on mobile devices; and examines time spent with game consoles and playing DVDs.

TV remains the dominant media platform, with the average American spending 35.1 hours a week in front of their living room set. Americans spend about 14 hours a week tuned to AM or FM radio. The Internet trails as a distant third, accounting for a little more than five hours of time a week. 

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