MONTREAL -- A new study says Canadians prefer to use their personal video recorders to catch up on television shows during the week.

It found that Canadians watched more TV shows on their PVRs on a weekly basis in 2012 than on free, legal online services like broadcasters' websites.

The Convergence Consulting Group study says this habit has been driven by aggressive pricing including free PVRs by providers such as Bell, Telus, Shaw and Quebecor.

The study found that 4.7 million Canadian households had personal video recorders at the end of 2012, compared with 3.5 million in 2011.

During this time, Canada's TV providers gained 52,000 new subscribers, down from 233,000 in 2011.

In 2012, there were 250,000 Canadians who cut the cord on their TV providers, with an estimated 130,000 to cut their services by the end of this year.