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Global digital TV homes to double between 2011 and 2017, passing billion barrier

A new report from Digital TV Research is predicting that global digital TV penetration will climb from 48.6% at the end of 2011 to 86.7% by 2017 leading to a total of 1.323 billion digital TV homes.

The Digital TV World Household Forecasts report states that digital cable will be the most popular TV platform by end-2017, accounting for just under a third (32.4%) of the world’s TV households, with analogue cable still serving 4.1% of TV homes. Pay digital DTH penetration will be 14.4%, with FTA digital DTH accounting for 9.1%. Pay IPTV penetration will climb to 10.8%, up from only 3.7% at end-2011. About 16.7% of homes will be primary FTA DTT at end-2016, with 0.9% pay DTT. Analogue terrestrial TV will be taken by 9.2% of the world’s TV households, down from 31.8% at end-2011.

The analyst also estimates that 259 million of the 648 million digital TV homes to be added between 2011 and 2017 will come from digital cable. Furthermore there will 174 million new primary FTA DTT homes; 5 million more pay-DTT homes;  an extra 114 million pay-IPTV homes; and pay-DTH and FTA DTH homes up 66 million and 31 million respectively.

Commented report author Simon Murray: “There were still 714 million analogue TV households (both terrestrial and cable, with a few analogue DTH ones) by end-2011. However, this total will fall to 202 million by end-2017. Analogue penetration will drop from 51.4% at end-2011 to 13.3% by end-2017.”

According to the report, regional penetration at end-2017 will vary from 100% in North America to 76% in Latin America. However, Digital TV research predicts that Latin America and Asia Pacific will record strong conversion to digital. It adds that by 2017, 47 countries will be completely digital compared with only Finland and Spain by the end of 2011. Of the 648 million digital TV households to be added between 2011 and 2017, 440 million (68%) will be in the Asia Pacific region, bringing its total to 714 million. Digital TV Research calculates that China became the largest digital TV household nation in 2010, and will boast 417 million digital homes by end-2017, by which time India will almost certainly have overtaken the US.

Looking as to how the various players can and will monetise such growth, Digital TV Research believes that total pay-TV penetration reached half of the world’s TV households as early as the end of 2010, and will rise to 63% by the end of 2017. Penetration at this time will range from 87% in North America to 22% in the Middle East and Africa. In individual countries, pay-TV penetration will likely remain highest in the Netherlands, at 99.5% by end-2017. Not surprisingly China will have the most pay-TV subs, at 315 million by end-2017, followed by India with 145 million.

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