Despite the US toy market seeing overall gains during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping periods, overall 2013 retail dollar sales of toys saw a 1% drop over 2012. That’s according to research firm The NPD Group, which found that the largest sales growth occurred within youth electronics.
With mobile usage among kids soaring and on-demand deals popping up daily, it’s easy to forget about good old TV for a minute. But Americans surely haven’t. In fact, according to Nielsen’s December 2013 cross-platform report, traditional TV is the most-consumed form of media among all demographics by a long shot. However, what’s being viewed as the largest areas of growth this past year is the usage of VOD, as well as ownership of tablets within TV-watching households.
With tablets dominating US Black Friday sales last weekend, a takeover appears to be in full swing. Perpetuating the trend are new numbers from PBS Kids that indicate tablets are tops on parents’ holiday tech purchases list, edging out videogame consoles by more than 10%.
This week, University of Chicago economists Matthew Gentzkow and Jesse Shapiro open up about their research suggesting that TV’s arrival in the US had a beneficial effect on students’ cognitive achievement. I spotlight the economists’ unique methodologies and I chat with them about the detective work of finding patterns in reams of data.