76% of respondents get local news from a service provided by a local TV stationConsumers prefer apps for breaking news, and tablets for reading content, according to a recent mobile survey by StepLeader. The survey delivers rare customer insight on local news and mobile technology: 25% of smartphone owners have a local news app installed on their phone and 82% are opposed to paying for news content on a mobile device.

StepLeader surveyed 1,165 consumers with a local news app on their smartphone, tablet, or connected TV. The mobile survey was fielded in May 2013. The survey results were not weighted. Based on a Researchscape assessment of the questionnaire and methodology, this survey is only slightly likely to be representative of U.S. consumers in general: the results should be considered qualitative or directional in nature.

Despite new technology increasing the ease of accessing news anywhere, local TV broadcast remains the primary choice for consuming local news content with 47% of respondents choosing it as their primary source of news. The second most popular source of getting local news is through the local TV station app with 17% of respondents. A separate survey on news consumption by Mobiles Republic found that mobile applications and TV are the 2 media that consumers use most to get their news.

What is your primary choice for getting local news?
 Source: StepLeader, n = 1,165Researchscape.com 

With the popularity of local TV it is not surprising that the most common way that consumers discovered a local news app is through an on-air promotion from a local TV broadcast with 41% of respondents finding their app in this way.

How did you find out about the app?
 Source: StepLeader, n = 1,165Researchscape.com 

Those with a local news app use it fairly frequently: 58% of respondents reported using it at least 4 times in the past 7 days.

How many times in the last 7 days have you used your local news app?
 Source: StepLeader, n = 1,165Researchscape.com 

For more information on this survey, refer to Local Media App Trends.

Author Notes:

Jeffrey Henning

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Jeffrey Henning, IPC is a professionally certified researcher and has personally conducted over 1,400 survey research projects. Jeffrey is a member of the Insights Association and the American Association of Public Opinion Researchers. In 2012, he was the inaugural winner of the MRA’s Impact award, which “recognizes an industry professional, team or organization that has demonstrated tremendous vision, leadership, and innovation, within the past year, that has led to advances in the marketing research profession.” In 2022, the Insights Association named him an IPC Laureate. Before founding Researchscape in 2012, Jeffrey co-founded Perseus Development Corporation in 1993, which introduced the first web-survey software, and Vovici in 2006, which pioneered the enterprise-feedback management category. A 35-year veteran of the research industry, he began his career as an industry analyst for an Inc. 500 research firm.