40 million connected TVs are expected to be shipped in 2010, a adding to a market that is expected to grow to over 118 million in 2014, according to US research firm DisplaySearch. However, Dallas-based Parks Associates is a bit more cautious and is predicting the figure for European households to be to 47 million in 2014.
However in both research reports, the outlook for connected TV sets is bright. The figures from DisplaySearch refer to the number of sets shipped, the figure from park Associates is devices in the home.
The new research from Parks Associates indicates the number of European households with a connected TV will grow from less than 4 million in 2009 to 47 million in 2014. The number of households with a connected Blu-ray player will jump from 5 million in 2010 to approximately 66 million in 2014.
“Connectivity is becoming standard in CE products,” said Kurt Scherf, VP, Principal Analyst, Parks Associates, in a statement. “Stakeholders as diverse as managed service providers, content aggregators, and third-party application developers will play a role in how these devices link to services and allow the consumer to discover new ways to interact with entertainment.”
Despite the growth of the connected TV segment, no clear front-runner has emerged. DisplaySearch said that only around 10% of the connected TVs sold in Japan have joined a network so far, while expectations for North America have been scaled back as the TV market struggles in the region this year.
In Europe, Parks expects a growing role for hybrid devices. “The growth of hybrid set-top boxes, which offer broadcast and broadband/IPTV options, is a major trend in the European video market, especially as the continent is poised for full DTT switchover,” according to Scherf. “For example, DTT coverage in France reached 88% of the market by June 2009, and the full switchover will finish in 2011. Industry consortia in several nations are working on set-top standards to enable interactive TV services. Efforts include MHP, HbbTV, Project Canvas, OHTV, and Hybridcast.”
By contrast to the connected TV market, uptake of 3D TVs among consumers has been limited by high prices and lack of content. Displaysearch expects that 3.2 million 3D TVs will be shipped in 2010, with growth to over 90 million in 2014. Based on this forecast, 3D will grow from 2% of all flat panel TVs shipped in 2010, to 41% in 2014.
“While TV manufacturers have bold plans and a lot of new products, consumers remain cautious,” said Paul Gray, Director of TV Electronics Research. “Consumers have been told that 3D TV is the future, but there still remains a huge price jump and little 3D content to watch.”