Online video device shipments get ahead of content and services | News | Rapid TV News
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A leading analyst is warning that just understanding devices or services is no longer enough to get to grips with today’s digital entertainment market; instead what’s needed is to closely track and assess the new dynamics of the entire ecosystem.


As it launches its new US Digital Entertainment Tracker, research firm In-Stat is warning that the industry may be in danger of getting ahead of actual demand and indeed not anticipating the dynamics of all its constituent parts.

For example, In-Stat predicts that the installed base of devices capable of supporting online video will grow much faster than either the availability of online video content, or the adoption of over-the-top (OTT) video services.

Among the key dynamic for In-Stat are HDTVs being enhanced with OTT video services and online applications; retailers, such as Best Buy, Wal-Mart and Sears-Kmart introducing online services to compensate for lower video disc sales and to promote customised device sales; and pay-TV service deploying, as a response to the aforementioned, hybrid set-top boxes (STBs) that support both broadcast and online video viewing without the need for smart consumer electronics (CE) devices.

It cites as prime evidence a 94% annual growth rate for Web-enabled TV shipments in the US and indications that 45% of US broadband households prefer to obtain at least some of their digital entertainment from online video services. In addition it believes that 54% of consumer households would be more likely to purchase movies using a digital rights locker-based online video service.

However, In-Stat cautions that except for owning personal film favourites, consumers strongly favour acquiring their TV programme and movies from subscription services or rentals. It also estimates that half of electronic video files are stored on a PC hard drive.

“The boundaries between market segments are blurring,” commented Keith Nissen, Principal Analyst. “Today, manufacturers, retailers, service providers, and content producers are all reaching beyond their traditional business models in order to maintain long-term survival.”