Global IPTV subscription had a record 34.6% growth in 2010

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2011 
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Global Broadband Penetration Is The Critical Driver Behind Broadband Forum’s Ipv6 Solutions

LONDON — Global IPTV subscription had a record 34.6% growth in 2010 according to figures prepared by Point Topic and announced today by the Broadband Forum. 2010 was also a landmark year for broadband subscriptions – following the milestone half billion lines achieved in July 2010, subscriber figures continued to climb steadily and ended the year at 523,066,022 – a net addition of over 55 million lines during the year. With more and more devices coming online and broadband growing at such a steady rate, the timing could not be better for the release of BroadbandSuite™ 4.0, the IPv6 Toolkit of the Broadband Forum.

The final quarter of 2010 followed a similar pattern to the rest of the year in terms of percentage growth in broadband subscribers, reflecting a steady and sustained increase which was broadly in line with the previous two years. Asia is set to overtake Europe during 2011 with China still dominating the rankings both for total subscribers and net additions, as well as in percentage growth terms.

Meanwhile by the end of 2010 the total number of IPTV subscribers had reached almost 45.4 million, representing over 11.5 million new subscribers over the year and an annual increase of 34.6%. The fourth quarter was the strongest quarter for IPTV growth, adding more than 3.4 million new subscribers and accounting for 8% of the total growth.

Presenting the report at the IP&TV World Forum in London today, Laurie Adams Gonzalez, Marketing Director of the Broadband Forum, said: “2010 was a banner year for IPTV and broadband. We have watched how broadband is changing the world and creating a connected society that few could have imagined a few years ago. With great success comes real world logistical problems – the surge of new devices coming online will soon exhaust the IPv4 address pool. To address this looming problem, the Broadband Forum focused our resources to ensure specifications were in place for a smooth integration of the new Internet protocol, IPv6 into network and device management around the world.”

The BroadbandSuite™ 4.0 IPv6 Toolkit defines the network support of IPv6 from core to user, brings IPv6 to all TR-101 based network deployments, allows remote management of IPv6 devices, is scalable to address trillions of devices, and future enhancements have the potential to enrich the user experience (supporting secure, mobile and nomadic applications) and enable the proliferation of connected user devices. Most importantly, this IPv6 toolkit will help service providers reduce the impact of IPv4 protocol exhaustion on their services today while ensuring the growth of new users, devices and applications continues unhampered.

IPTV Regional growth

Europe held on to its number one regional spot, but the growth rate was lower in comparison to other markets, mostly due to maturing IPTV territories such as France and Belgium. Asia showed strong growth with over 50% for the year and is the one to watch to overtake Europe in 2011 as largest IPTV subscriber base. And although the region started with a low overall number of subscribers, the Middle East and Africa (MEA), had the strongest percentage growth – at 63.5%.

                            2009Q4      2010Q4  % increase
                        ----------  ----------  ----------
Europe                  16,586,495  20,717,682      24.91%
Asia                    10,837,200  16,365,767      51.01%
Americas                 6,134,222   8,062,478      31.43%
Middle East and Africa     133,652     218,500      63.48%
                        ----------  ----------  ----------
Global                  33,691,569  45,364,427      34.65%

Source: Data provided by Point Topic

Six of the top 10 IPTV countries are in Europe, with France remaining the leading IPTV nation, passing the 10 million mark for the first time. China (including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) also passed 10 million, and is closing the gap on France. It will almost certainly overtake France in Q1 or Q2 2011.

                            2009Q4     2010Q3      2010Q4
                         ---------  ---------  ----------
France                   8,555,000  9,814,640  10,255,000
China (all territories)  6,526,000  9,078,000  10,002,000
USA                      5,641,000  6,839,053   7,301,800
South Korea              2,370,219  3,205,026   3,645,650
Japan                    1,774,981  2,081,457   2,213,117
Germany                  1,121,000  1,387,500   1,513,200
Belgium                    752,000    920,000     975,000
Spain                      798,757    845,400     858,200
Italy                      826,000    831,000     819,000
Sweden                     654,000    739,500     770,000

Source: Data provided by Point Topic

Broadband Trends and Overall Growth

2010 saw a steady rise in the number of new broadband subscribers with 56 million subscribers added, accounting for 12% annual growth. Asia is moving to become the largest broadband region in the world and is likely to overtake Europe during 2011 in terms of total broadband subscribers. The Americas and the Middle East & Africa are still showing plenty of activity, but Europe and Asia show faster broadband adoption.

Region                       2009Q4       2010Q1       2010Q2       2010Q3       2010Q4
------                  -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------
Europe                  175,746,887  179,269,755  182,444,480  185,296,595  188,881,105
Asia                    153,720,190  161,771,644  169,375,420  177,816,795  184,591,415
Americas                123,505,797  126,091,441  128,047,756  130,662,813  133,861,702
Middle East and Africa   14,099,117   14,607,372   15,023,364   15,323,502   15,683,800
                        -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------  -----------
Total                   467,071,991  481,740,212  494,891,020  509,099,705  523,018,022

Asia is made up of a mixture of rapidly growing as well as relatively saturated mature markets and a large and increasingly affluent population. This means growth from new subscribers as well as a number of users trading up to higher speed broadband options as their broadband usage increases and local availability allows.

total fixed line (Q409, Q310, Q410)

China continues to dominate the rankings both for total subscribers and net additions as well as the most rapidly growing, in percentage terms, market in the top 10 over the last 12 months.

“The Chinese broadband juggernaut continues to overshadow other markets. Growth is accelerating and this quarter is a significant improvement on the same period in 2008 and 2009,” says Oliver Johnson, chief analyst, Point Topic.

While China dominates, there continues to be plenty of growth in other parts of the market. The US, Japan and the UK all fared better in 2010 than they did in 2008 and 2009. Germany is doing reasonably well too, however there are indications of a slowing in other areas, such as France, Russia and Italy due to these being well established markets.

Top 10 Broadband Countries:

                              2009Q4       2010Q3       2010Q4
                         -----------  -----------  ----------- 
China (all territories)  114,043,648  131,748,298  136,496,883
USA                       82,724,402   85,665,658   87,172,827
Japan                     31,913,500   33,858,800   34,467,000
Germany                   24,869,450   26,114,350   26,715,350
France                    18,986,700   19,616,000   19,887,530
UK                        18,356,000   19,210,000   19,607,600
South Korea               16,348,571   16,945,182   17,202,641
Italy                     13,343,890   14,072,128   14,257,650
Brazil                    10,921,400   12,168,900   12,656,200
Russia                     9,938,823   11,196,447   11,619,000

Source: Data provided by Point Topic

Meanwhile India continues its progress towards the Top 10. It will overtake Spain in the next quarter in terms of total fixed broadband subscribers and there is a possibility it will be in the top 10 by the end of the year.

Belarus, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Jordan, Egypt, Bolivia, Latvia, India, Venezuela, Estonia
Source: Data provided by Point Topic

Technology Overview

DSL continued to be the global access leader supporting 331 million subscribers. Cable’s market share is eroding and now sits at 106 million, while fiber is growing fast and is now serving 72 million customers. Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) and alternative internet access technologies continue to add market share as markets start to infill some areas where for various reasons it is difficult to deploy traditional fixed line access.

Technology Market Share 2010 Q4:

DSL                     63.36%
Fibre                   13.82%
Cable                   20.34%
Fixed Wireless Access    1.36%
Satellite/Other          1.12%

Source: Data provided by Point Topic

DSL and fiber both dominate the Asian markets while cable is most popular in the Americas. With the US now seeing some results from its government commitment to broadband this may lead to a pick-up in fiber growth. DSL however is likely to become more and more dominant globally due to additions in Asia as the addressable market keeps growing.

The Broadband Forum in 2011

Building on such a solid year of growth and achievement in 2010, there are a number of major areas of activity for the Broadband Forum in 2011. The Forum will continue to add to its IPv6 Toolkit, expand its TR-069 CPE WAN Management Protocol and associated data models, develop PON solutions and test suites to support the growing fiber market requirements, as well as continue work around mobile backhaul and enterprise support. A strategic focus of 2011 is to develop the reference model for the next generation multi-service architecture and to ensure that the industry has the tools needed to address the requirements and opportunities that will come with Fixed Mobile Convergence (FMC).

“Our BroadbandSuite™ 4.0 is set to become the definitive work on IPv6, ensuring that the industry can address the exponentially growing device and smart gateway requirements of next generation broadband”, said Kevin Foster, Broadband Forum President. “As broadband continues to reach new corners of the world, we will do all we can to ensure Providers are equipped with all the tools necessary to succeed.”