Almost 20 million households subscribed to IPTV by the end of last year. Th is is one third more than a year ago, but the growth is much slower than some analysts predicted. Nevertheless, it can be concluded that IPTV has achieved a significant increase. In 2005, there were estimates of 25 million subscribers worldwide in 2010; this number is still reachable. However, some predictions were about 50 or 60 million subscribers in 2010.
According to Informa Telecoms and Media, there were 19.96 million IPTV households at the end of the year 2008, representing approximately 3% of the global multichannel TV market. As in the past, growth was steady but not spectacular; 7.5 million additional subscribers were registered.
“It is a correct observation that IPTV has not penetrated into the broadband households, as market participants had expected, but it is wrong to declare that the concept is doomed to failure,” said Julian Herbert, Principal Analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media on the eve of the IPTV World Forum in London.
“In markets where bandwidth is available and the marketing and pricing are attractive, IPTV attracts large numbers of new customers and helps operators to increase revenue per user”.
Operators such as AT & T, France Telecom and PWCC in Hong Kong increase substantially their shares in the competitive TV market. Meanwhile, the number of fixed network broadband subscriptions rose to 422 million. This means an increase of 68 million last year.
The growth has slowed in Western Europe, as broadband penetration has reached more than 50% – with the exception of five countries – and more than 60% in 20 areas. China has outdated the United States as the largest fixed-line broadband market with 82 million subscriptions, although this figure accounts for still less than 20% of all Chinese households.