Research from Analysys Mason has revealed that lingering fear on behalf of the pay-TV industry that they will be usurped by these digital alternative is, at present anyway, somewhat misplaced.
In Pay TV in Europe: forecasts and analysis 2011–2016, an investigation of the European pay-TV industry, the analyst predicts that the number of pay-TV households in the region will increase by 12% to 185.2 million between 2011 and 2016. Yet ultimately Analysys Mason expects that only 2.58 million households will be using an OTT service as a primary service for their main TV set in Europe in 2016, representing a mere 1.4% of pay-TV households.
However, the research firm does expect much stronger growth for OTT services as a complementary or secondary service, mostly on additional TV sets, for which many consumers are reluctant to incur ongoing additional charges of multi-room services. It forecasts that 14.6 million households will be using OTT as a secondary TV service, attracted by the ability to supplement free-to-air content on a pay-per-use basis.
The research found that connected TV is now appearing on the radars after almost two years as it is now increasingly available and affordable with all the major consumer electronics manufacturers moving to capitalise on what is seen as an emerging opportunity. The analyst also noted that for the first time, average consumers can readily gain access to OTT services directly through their TV sets, without seeking out devices geared towards specific niches, such as games consoles or Internet set top boxes (STBs) -top boxes such as Apple TV devices.