Operators are making headway on digital distribution, with the availability of authenticated TV everywhere (TVE) services among US pay-TV subscribers having increased by more than 30% in the last six months.
"Though TV everywhere efforts were first announced in 2009, it has taken nearly four years for operators and networks to hammer out contract terms around several contentious issues, chief among them how best to adapt TV business practices to a net-connected world," noted Bill Niemeyer, TDG senior analyst and author of a new report on the subject.
He added: "Since that time, many operators and networks, but not all, have made solid progress in resolving business friction and shifting the focus to deployment. The results are striking."
According to TDG's TVE Availability Index – which measures average accessibility to a select group of the top 14 TV networks among subscribers of the top 15 MVPDs – 60% of pay-TV subscribers have access to authenticated TVE services. This is a 33% increase from March 2013, when only 45% of subscribers had TVE access to the same networks and operators.
So far, though, actual uptake has lagged. MRG recently found that only 6% of adult Internet users in the US view online video from a pay-TV operator's website.
Niemeyer noted that providing comprehensive TVE services means enabling access to both on-demand shows plus a full slate of live linear broadcasts. "TDG's consumer research has shown solid interest in accessing live linear broadcasts on non-TV video screens, especially real-time events like sports and reality programming," he said.
This combination, says Niemeyer, would result in a dramatic increase in authenticated TVE use.