Behind Poynter’s Tablet Eyetrack Study

Written by Sean Mussenden. Posted in Sessions

Panel Description:Go behind the scenes on the recent Poynter Eyetrack study on tablets.


  • Jeremy Gilbert, Northwestern University
  • Sara Quinn, The Poynter Institute
  • Dave Stanton, Managing Developer, Smart Media Creative

Video coming soon…


Student Writeup

By Haley Stracher
University of Florida

GAINESVILLE – Digital natives read a larger volume of content on tablets than people who grew up in the print era, panelists said during a presentation of a Poynter Institute eye-tracking study of tablet use.

Younger and older generations find news differently, the panelists said. Older people tend to read all of the headlines until they find something they are interested in. Younger people jump around, diving into a story when they find an article they want to read.

Tablet readers tend to “bail out” of a story after 78 seconds, the panelists said. The Poynter study also found that the majority of online readers use the browsers’ back button instead of the back button built into a website.


What kind of reader are you? Methodical or Scanning? Detached or Intimate?
Details from the Poynter tablet eye-track study.

Methodical ­
You look at all the story headlines before you click one. 48 percent of people were methodical readers, with more older readers than younger readers falling into this category.


You click on a story if it seems interesting but tend to find another story quickly after. 52 percent were scanning readers. The demographic of these readers were towards the younger, digital-native generation


You touch the screen on a tablet or mobile device a few times while reading, and mostly read by moving your eyes. 39 percent of people touched the screen about four times.


You touch the screen on a tablet or mobile device often and you read by scrolling the screen. 61 percent of people touched screen about eight times.

Selected Tweets

Trackback from your site.

Visit Gainesville

About Gainesville, Fla.