Media usage in Germany - Statistics & Facts

Published by Evgeniya Koptyug, Sep 4, 2019
Television, radio, books and newspapers still remain the types of media which attract the broadest user group with at least occasional usage in Germany, even if figures have been fluctuating only very slightly in recent years and not showing significant growth. During a survey conducted in 2018, 93 percent of German media users stated they watched TV, compared to 95 percent the year before. Also 93 percent listened to the radio and 90 percent read books. Meanwhile, that same year, newspapers, including both printed and e-papers, were read by 85 percent of respondents, a drop from 90 percent a year earlier.

Regarding daily media usage time, German media consumers spent an average of 248 minutes a day watching TV, 109 minutes listening to the radio and 97 minutes on the internet in 2018. The same year, figures on device ownership for household media consumption showed that 94 percent of media users owned a TV and 91 percent had a smartphone, with numbers having grown steadily in the past four years. Among the devices used for personal media consumption in 2018, televisions again topped the ranking at 90 percent, with smartphones following at 88 percent and radios being the third most-used at 77 percent. Laptops were catching up at 70 percent.

In 2017, the share of television viewers in Germany amounted to roughly 71 percent, while daily TV viewing time differed by age group. That year, 3- to 13-year-olds spent 73 minutes a day on average watching television, compared to 105 minutes in the 14 to 29 age group. Viewers aged 50 years and older spent an average of 160 minutes a day in front of the TV. Based on data from the same year regarding the market share of TV channels in Germany, public-service TV broadcaster ZDF ranked first with 13 percent. As of 2018, the most popular tv genres were the news, crime series and movies, with animal and nature programs concluding the top three.

In 2018, 36.5 million people listened to the radio daily, compared to 12.7 million who did so almost daily and 10.87 million who turned it on sometimes. According to a study conducted that same year on the daily reach of German radio, 78.5 percent of female and 76.6 percent of male listeners were reached. Across age groups, the highest reach was recorded among listeners aged 50 years and older at 81.5 percent. Another evaluation showed that 29 percent of respondents occasionally listened to live radio online. Based on gross contacts, the three leading radio stations in Germany are Radio NRW, WDR 2 and SWR3.

The number of internet users in Germany has only been growing. In the last decade alone, user numbers increased from 42.7 million in 2008 to 63.3 million in 2018. Meanwhile, with the rise of mobile device use, growth was also visible in the share of mobile internet users, at 64 percent in 2017. Among age groups, in 2018, the highest share of internet users was recorded among 14- to 19-year-olds and 20- to 29-year olds, while the lowest share, still at an impressive 64.7 percent, was found among users aged 70 years and older. As of November 2018, the leading German websites by visits were Samsung's news service Upday with 546.3 million visits, followed by eBay Kleinanzeigen and twitch.tv.

Developments in the digital media landscape in particular have influenced the existence of German print media. 43.7 million people still read newspapers several times a week during their free time, compared to 10.7 million who did so several times a month. However, figures on the circulation of daily newspapers in Germany show a continuing trend of decrease, from 20 million copies in 2008 to 14.1 million in 2018.

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Media usage in Germany

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