The number of customers getting their television through the Internet is growing at a substantial rate, according to figures recently released by the Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute.
According to the report, there were 92.7 million subscribers to Internet television by the end of 2013, a number that increased 23.7 percent year-to-year. Additionally, the firm expects that there will be over 100 million IPTV subscribers by the end of the first half of 2014 and 128 million by the end of the year.
The report points out that the Asia Pacific region has the most subscribers currently, with 45.6 million customers getting their television through the Internet. Western Europe comes in second with 27.3 million viewers. While Latin America has 1.2 million subscribers, that number is expected to increase significantly thanks to the deployment of fiber optic networks.
Because it leverages the power of the Internet, IPTV provides users a variety of benefits, including:
- Better quality: Because the content is delivered digitally, viewers will notice improved picture quality which leads to an overall improved experience.
- More content: Whereas traditional cable providers are limited by the bandwidth that’s available to them, IPTV comes with switched broadcast capabilities which enable users to enjoy an unlimited amount of channels, so to speak, as it is free from the constraints of bandwidth.
- Affordability: As technology continues to evolve and prices come down, users are able to buy equipment for less—and get more content in return. Delivering content via Internet Protocol costs less than doing so via traditional cable infrastructure.
As the technology continues to improve and prices drop, it will be interesting to see just how big the global IPTV market can grow.