China is the world’s largest television market with over 378 million TV households and multichannel penetration of 48%, or more than 180 million homes. Digital penetration is projected to reach around 70% of cable homes within five years. The average viewer watches TV just under three hours a day (176 minutes, or roughly 21 hours per week), a pattern that has been stable for four years.

International channels are granted full landing rights only in Guangdong province, in selected hotels and in foreign residential communities. However, foreign programme blocks are distributed via locally-owned channels which can deliver strong audience figures. Nationally, TV dramas continued to dominate, scoring 31.9% of audience ratings in the first half of 2010.  News programming was second with 13% and entertainment third with a 10.6% share of the total.

In the first half, CTR Media Intelligence reported advertising expenditure of US$40.4 billion (rate card), representing 20% year-on-year growth, the highest increase in nearly four years. The spike, helped by early momentum generated around the World Cup starting in June, signalled restored confidence after 2009 when the market was buffeted by the world financial crisis. TV still holds a 79% share of the total media advertising market. Toiletries and beverages contributed most to overall growth in 2010.

In China, CSM Media Research operates the world's largest TV and radio audience measurement panel network, covering more than 55,000 households and 182,000 individuals. It provides representative data on the viewing patterns of 1.2 billion people in China mainland and 6.3 million people in Hong Kong SAR.

China Actual %
Population 1,347,350,000
Total Homes 449,116,667
Household Size 3.0
TV Homes 426,660,833 95.0%
Multichannel Homes 215,642,000 50.5%
Internet Users 513,100,000 38.1%