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TV Everywhere is blowing up thanks to iPad, other mobile devices

Published Jun 28th, 2013 8:30PM EDT
TV Everywhere Apple's iPad

TV viewers and providers are embracing multiscreen and TV Everywhere services. According to ABI Research, nearly a third of households that receive their TV from the phone companies will access these services in the U.S. by the end of the year. Traditional cable and satellite providers have been slower to adopt new features, however, due to the older and more diverse technologies they use. ABI analyst Michael Inouye notes that many TV providers are capable of offering these services to customers, but “securing the rights to broader content distribution is the primary remaining hurdle.” He believes that “once standard metrics are developed the content floodgates are expected to open wider.” Mobile devices are the reason behind the high adoption rate of TV Everywhere services. The research firm found that outside of the computer, Apple’s iPad is the most supported multiscreen and TV Everywhere device, even more popular than gaming consoles such as the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. ABI’s press release follows below.

TV Everywhere Grows, but Content Rights Still Slowing the Market Down

Nearly one-third of US Telco TV households are expected to access multiscreen or TV Everywhere services by the end of 2013 – the vast majority of which already use advanced interactive features like remote programming a DVR. Cable is close behind due to its early lead, but the growth rate for these services is slower because of the greater diversity of cable households and services (not all service providers offer TVE). Satellite operators are further behind, due to slower starts and lack of in-house broadband services, but offer some novel experiences like Dish’s Sling place-shifting technology.

“The market is still developing with many of the early growing pains, like authentication, finally starting to take a back seat to the content,” comments senior analyst, Michael Inouye. “In many respects the technology is in place to increasingly offer wider reaching TVE services. Securing the rights to broader content distribution is the primary remaining hurdle, but once standard metrics are developed the content floodgates are expected to open wider.”

Consumers also need further education about these TVE services, particularly to help navigate content availability and fragmented device support. Outside of the computer, Apple’s iPad continues to be the most supported TVE device in the US market. In fact, iOS and Android smartphones and tablets capture the lion’s share of device support, besting even the popular game consoles, speaking to the vital importance mobility plays in the future of the TVE market.

“In the multiscreen and OTT space the MVPDs are moving at a relatively fast pace – rapid enough that in some instances the platforms have outpaced consumer awareness,” adds practice director, Sam Rosen. “Beyond consumer education a great deal of work remains to best optimize the user experience, one that satisfies consumers’ increasing penchant for on demand content but also ensures the content is adequately monetized. This objective is creating new opportunities for a wide range of companies within the greater content value chain.”