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Report: Increased Wireless Connectivity Among Blu-ray Players

28 Jun, 2011 By: Erik Gruenwedel

New study finds stationary devices such as DVD/Blu-ray players slow to adopt

Wireless connectivity of consumer electronics would appear to be a requisite in an age of the smartphone and tablet computers.

While a new In-Stat study found that CE products (mostly portable) incorporating WLAN connectivity will top 419 million units by 2015 — including 54 million HDTVs by 2013 — stationary devices such as Blu-ray players and digital photo frames are just getting into the transition.

Indeed, electronic book readers will reach 90% WLAN connectivity by 2015, while handheld video game consoles will reach 32% and notebook PCs 57%.

“WLAN connectivity in portable CE devices is not a novel idea and, in fact, [is] an absolute requirement in most cases,” says Frank Dickson, VP of research at Scottsdale, Ariz.-based In-Stat. “What is new is the growth in stationary CE WLAN-enabled devices [such as Blu-ray players].”

Dickson said Wi-Fi tends to be really big in North America and Europe, while Blu-ray players are most popular in Asia. Also, Wi-Fi adds about $50 to the cost of Blu-ray ray player.

“For a consumer, they need to see a compelling value proposition for Internet-based programming such as Netflix, Hulu or Vudu to consider wireless connectivity,” Dickson said. “To date, the value proposition has not been compelling enough for the buyers of Blu-ray players.”

The analyst added that the global embedded base of Web-enabled and smart CE devices is expected to grow substantially during the next five years, providing the connectivity necessary to support IP-based video content.

“Smart CE devices actually go one step further, offering online applications,” he said.


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