Studies carried out on PVR-owning households found not only that 58% of users paid attention to adverts while fast forwarding through them, but that 53% "have gone back to watch commercials they mistakenly skipped".
The research by Nielsen Media Research - which has also signed a deal with PVR firm TiVo to measure PVR usage in the US - was carried out in seven areas across North Carolina, Florida, Colorado and Texas. It also found a 4% increase in ratings for primetime shows when PVR usage is taken into account.
The study seems to contradict fears among commercial broadcasters that PVRs will have severe effects on the advertising market.
In the UK, TV ratings service Barb has pledged to include audience figures from Sky+ PVRs, but said it would not include figures for adverts if a viewer fast forwards through them.