Prime time, i.e. the time when most viewers sit down at their screens and the TV stations show the news or the most attractive programmes, was always between seven and eight in the evening. With the advent of internet television, viewers have been given the opportunity to change this. According to the data from the TV channels, they continue to sit in front of their screens most often in the evening, with only the rhythm of viewing during the week differing.

For example, according to the long-term statistics of the TV operator Telly, the average highest viewing is on Sundays, while the least watched day is Thursday. The prime time for Telly is from quarter to nine and ends around ten in the evening.

The biggest Czech TV stations have a similar experience.

"The main station Prima has long had the highest number of viewers and the highest share, i.e. the share of total viewership, in the main evening time between 8 pm and 10 pm. The same is true for the Prima COOL, Prima LOVE and Prima ZOOM channels and Prima MAX. At the same time, Prima COOL and Prima MAX are also shaar strong in the later evening hours of 22:00 to 00:00,"

said Prima spokesperson Gabriela Semová.

She added that on the contrary, Prima KRIMI station has the highest viewership and share in the afternoon between 2 pm and 6 pm. The CNN Prima NEWS news station attracts the most viewers during the evening news.

The main Prima station, she said, has the strongest viewer interest between 7pm and 9pm on weekdays, when Prima broadcasts premium in-house productions. "On the main Prima station, the highest viewing figures are on Tuesdays and Thursdays, when we broadcast the flagship series ZOO. The station is also above average on Wednesdays thanks to the series On the Waves of the Adriatic," Semová calculated.

On thematic stations, such as Prima COOL, Prima MAX and Prima KRIMI, the highest viewership is at the weekend. "For most of our thematic stations, Saturday and Sunday are among the most watched days. Prima LOVE has the highest viewership on Wednesdays and Fridays," the Prima spokesperson added.

Nova is similar, with ratings peaking just before 9pm.

"We call that segment the first prime time, it starts at 20:20. It copies the time when the most people are in front of the screens. The second prime time is after about 9:30, that's when the second prime time segment starts, which follows the first one,"

said Silvia Majeská, programme director of Nova, in an interview with

She added that the viewership varies during the week. "The number of viewers varies. I think it kind of naturally follows the cycle of the week and historical habits. Most viewers are in front of Czech screens on Sundays, especially on Sunday evenings. Sunday is generally strong. The second most watched day in prime time is Monday," she described.

The same experience is shared by Czech Television (CT), which has prime time defined as the time slot between 7pm and 10pm. "Most viewers watch TV around 9pm. This applies both to television in general and to the main channel CT1, where the news hour between 7 pm and 8 pm is added to it," added public television spokeswoman Vendula Krejčová.

In the case of CT2, the peak in viewership occurs between 8pm and 9.30pm. In the case of ČT24, viewership follows the news at 12 and 18 o'clock and the news hour between 19 and 20 o'clock. "For Déček, most children are around 7am, a little later at the weekend, and in the evening between 6pm and 8pm. Viewing habits have been stable for a long time, they do not change," Krejčová recalled.

She added that in general, most people watch TV in prime time on Sundays, and the least on Fridays and Saturdays. From Monday to Thursday, the number of viewers at the screens is quite similar. "Even in the case of Czech Television, the most people watch on Sunday evening, we register high interest of viewers, but also on Monday, Friday and Saturday, which is related to the deployment of primetime broadcasts. The weakest days are Tuesdays to Thursdays," Krejčová added.

She noted that if CT offers viewers a premiere drama programme, an attractive sport or an extraordinary news event, the viewership is above average on any day of the week.

"In general, however, we see higher viewer interest in CT broadcasts on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. In the case of the premiere of a detective series, also on Mondays," Krejčová noted.

Prime time remains, but quality is changing
Decades of prime time also apply in the era of streaming services. According to Netflix data, the highest number of movie or TV show viewings worldwide is at 9 p.m. In countries with long working hours such as Argentina, Mexico or Singapore, the peak streaming time is around 10pm.

"The time between 7pm and 9pm, or 7pm to 10pm, is crucial for TV and will remain so for years to come. Although rewatching will grow, the habit of watching TV directly in the evening is so strong among most viewers that prime time will certainly continue," added Juraj Koiš from the expert server.

He warned, however, that qualitatively, prime time is not nearly as strong as it used to be. "Whereas five to ten years ago you needed at least two strong titles every night to keep the viewer's attention, today you can rotate older reruns of established series in prime time and you can maintain the necessary viewership," he said.

The viewer, he said, is no longer as demanding of quality and "newness" as they once were. "I think it has to do with the possibility of rewatching in IPTV, where the viewer finds the quality he wants to watch," Koiš explained.

The average Czech spent three hours and 40 minutes watching TV every day last year, according to data from the Association of Television Organizations.