Television viewing in the Netherlands via IPTV has grown dramatically, with cable going down and DTT and satellite DTH remaining stable, according to the Astra Satellite Monitor 2011.
The technical reach of the Astra satellite system in the Benelux markets from the 23.5 degrees East orbital position has increased by more than 140,000 households to 870,000, an annual growth of 20%. In total, 1.1 million homes in the Benelux are today receiving their television programmes from Astra. 80% of them are receiving channels from the two orbital positions 23.5 and 19.2 degrees East while the other 20% are served from 19.2 degrees East only.
Total satellite reception remains stable in both the Netherlands and Belgium, despite growing competition from IPTV providers, which mainly seems to hurt cable operators in both countries leaving satellite reception unaffected.
Within a year, the number of Dutch IPTV homes has more than doubled, from 370,000 at the end of 2010 to 790,000 in December, 2011. Cable is showing a slight decline, going down with 260,000 homes to a total of 5.3 million. Satellite DTH remains steady with 620,000 homes and DTT also staying around 710,000.
In the Netherlands, 96% of all satellite homes (600,000) can tune in to the Astra position at 19.2 degrees East, up from 94% the previous year.
The number of homes that also receive the Astra position at 23.5 degrees East has risen with 50,000 to a total of 530,000 (or 85%, up from 75%). !00% of these homes use a so-called duo-LNB allowing reception of the two positions with a single LNB.
In addition, some 170,000 homes are using satellite for secondary reception (mobile homes, boats, holiday homes). Total reach of satellite delivered signals is 6.7 million, or 90% of all Dutch TV homes.
Cable remains the main distribution platform for television with a market share of 66.1%, followed by IPTV with 10.4%, DTT with 9.5% and satellite 8.4%
The satellite universe is made up as follows: 89.5% are watching Astra and other satellites, 6% is only watching Astra at 19.2 degrees East, 3.1% are watching other satellites. 0.6% of the people interviewed could not name the satellite they were watching.
Belgium also shows a strong growth of IPTV homes – adding 140,000 homes to a total of 1.07 million (21.9% of all TV homes). Cable remains the major distribution form for TV, but is going down to 3.17 million.
DTT reception has gone down from 190,000 to 130,000 – not surprisingly as there is only one multiplex available with the public channels for each of the two territories in the country, VRT for Flanders and RTBF for Wallonia.
Satellite now boosts 530,000 homes, with the number of Astra homes showing a gain of 10,000 to 450,000. The number of homes that receive the Astra position at 23.5 degrees east has grown with 70,000 to 310,000 (84%).
In Belgium, cable remain dominant with a 64.6% market share, followed by IPTV with 20.9%, satellite DTH with 10.8% and DTT with 2.7%.
The growth of the Astra 23.5 degrees East reach in the Netherlands and Belgium has been fueled by the launch of Dutch regional channels and a wide range of HD channels via M7 Group-owned providers CanalDigitaal and TV Vlaanderen. The orbital position 23.5 degrees East is also used for the transmission of the Luxembourg TV channels.
Norbert Hölzle, SVP, commercial Europe, said in a statement: “We are very happy with the outcome of the SES Satellite Monitor. It confirms that, in only five years time, Astra 23.5 degrees East has firmly established itself as the leading and fastest growing satellite position for the Benelux region, in conjunction with the Astra 19.2 degrees East position. This great success in a region formerly dominated by terrestrial infrastructures is the result of a very close and solid cooperation between all market partners involved: M7 Group, free-tv broadcasters, the satellite equipment resellers, installers and SES.”.