Shipments of devices capable of streaming OTT video from VOD services such as Netflix and Hulu are predicted to increase to 1.7 billion units, so a new report by global information company IHS. This represents an increase of 20% this year with 1.43 billion units shipped in 2012.
Further the Consumer Electronics Topical Report estimates that the market will grow another 20 percent in 2014, on its way to some 2.67 billion units by 2017. By then, total shipments will have expanded by 86 percent from 2012 volumes.
OTT-capable equipment taken into account in the report include set-top boxes, Blu-ray players, Internet-enabled TVs, game players, digital media adapters like Apple TV or Roku, media tablets, PCs and smartphones. The majority of OTT devices now are either PCs or smartphones, which together accounted for 836 million of the 1.43 billion OTT-capable boxes shipped last year. Even though the primary task of the two devices is voice and data, both are also increasingly being used as media portals. But even discounting PCs and smartphones, the rest of the OTT device market is extremely large and growing at an accelerating rate. Approximately 480 million of such non-PC, non-smartphone devices will ship this year, up 30 percent from 2012.
According to the report, the only segment not forecast to grow this year is the handheld game platform. Like other single-tasking systems, the space is under attack from more broadly based general-purpose equipment, primarily smartphones and tablets. For the same reason, digital media adapters have been slow to gain acceptance, lagging behind other OTT devices and making up less than 1 percent of the total OTT market this year.
“Content owners, operators and consumers all are driving the proliferation of the OTT model,” said Jordan Selburn, Senior principal analyst, consumer platforms. “Content owners want to expand the market for the films, music and videos they own. Meanwhile, operators wish to use OTT in order to add value to their services and keep subscribers from cancelling TV subscriptions in favor of purely broadband connections—preventing what the industry calls ‘cutting the cord.’ Consumers, for their part, desire access to a wide variety of media at the time and place of their own choosing.”
DTG Staff | 10.12.2013