Asia Pacific TV market achieves twin milestones

Wednesday, July 7th, 2010 

According to the latest figures from Informa Telecoms & Media, the Asia Pacific TV sector passed two significant milestones last month, with the region now exceeding 150 million digital TV homes while, at the same time, surpassing 10 million IPTV households.

Despite the global macro-economic difficulties, during 2009 more than 35 million homes upgraded from analog to digital TV. Also in the year, 26 million new homes subscribed to pay TV, comprising 14 million to cable, 9 million to DTH and 3 million to IPTV.

Informa Telecoms & Media forecasts show that those sectors will continue to grow impressively over the next five years. Adam Thomas, Media Research Manager and lead analyst on the research said: “By 2015 there will be well over 400 million digital TV homes, including 40 million taking IPTV, which in turn will generate revenues of more than $40 billion.”

According to Thomas, “There are increasingly positive signs for digital TV in the region. Competition between the platforms is intensifying and this is pushing digital upgrades up the agenda of many operators.”

Informa Telecoms & Media is therefore forecasting that a 21% digital TV penetration rate at end-2009 will increase to 54% by end-2015. By 2015, digital penetration will have reached 100% in four markets (Australia, Hong Kong, New Zealand and Singapore), with another four expected to have achieved a penetration rate of 70% or more (Japan, Malaysia, South Korea and Taiwan).

“While globally IPTV has failed to make any real impact it does remain important in the Asia-Pacific region,” said Thomas. “We expect IPTV subscribers to grow by 25 million over the next five years, which means that it will become a significant rival to cable and DTH in some markets, notably via SingTel’s Mio TV in Singapore and Korea Telecom’s Qook in South Korea.”

“Despite this generally positive picture, our research found that digital upgrades will not be easy to achieve in some markets,” says Thomas. “In the cable sector in particular, subscribers are taking some convincing of the need to upgrade from analog to digital. Although there is good news in China where the government’s proactive approach to converting analog to digital is promoting upgrades.”

Digital TV penetration (%):

Country               2005  2009  2015
                      ----  ----  ----
Australia              30%   68%  100%
China                   1%   17%   54%
Hong Kong              58%   87%  100%
India                   5%   21%   52%
Indonesia               1%   2%    14%
Japan                  34%   47%   82%
Malaysia               40%   60%   79%
New Zealand            34%   65%  100%
Philippines             1%   5%    21%
Singapore              19%   69%  100%
South Korea            14%   44%   83%
Taiwan                  6%   16%   70%
Thailand                2%   12%   27%
Vietnam                 1%   12%   57%
                      ----  ----  ----
Asia Pacific Region     6%   21%   54%

All figures refer to year-end.

Source: Informa Telecoms & Media