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Report: Global Set-Top Market to Peak in 2012

27 Apr, 2009 By: Erik Gruenwedel

set top box

Despite a surge in television set-top box sales due to the upcoming analog-to-digital transition in the United States, shipments of set-top devices is expected to peak at 127 million units in 2012 and then decline, according to a new study.

London-based Screen Digest, in a report, said global set-top shipments would fall 8 million units to 119 million in 2013. It said 104 million set-top box units shipped in 2008.

Set-top boxes include cable and satellite providers, in addition to digital video recorders from TiVo, Web-enabled Blu-ray players and the Roku, Apple TV, FyreTV and Vudu media players.

In addition to the pay TV market, there will be almost 70 million units shipped in the global free-to-air market in 2013. Much of this new unit demand will be driven by service extensions and digitization of pay TV platforms in Eastern Europe and the major emerging BRIC markets (Brazil, Russia, India and China).

Following a period of growth in the next few years, a drop in consumer demand in China will be the primary cause for downturn in global shipments in 2013. The less-expensive boxes will impact global volumes but have little impact on revenue, which will continue to grow across all other regions. In addition, IPTV is expected to experience a significant decline in 2013 from 12 million units shipped to 10 million units. Between these two trends the global industry volume will fall by almost seven million.

“Although unit growth in the mature markets is starting to slow compared to the last five years, value growth will continue, driven by premium devices integrating HD, PVR and additional technologies such as home networking, hybrid service and widgets,” said Tom Morrod, senior analyst with Screen Digest.

The report said primary growth in IP sales would come through traditional satellite and cable operators, benefiting vendors with relationships in the traditional TV market and IP technologies.

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