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Digital Home Competition Fueled by Mainstream DVRs, Says IDC

  • 23 October, 2006 16:34

<p>NORTH SYDNEY, 23rd October 2006 - IDC’s latest research into the Australian digital home market finds that the increased competition among consumer electronics and IT vendors, as well as telcos and pay-TV operators, in positioning their respective digital devices as the cornerstone of the home leads to mainstream adoption of various Digital Video Recording (DVR) platforms, despite that these devices were considered "nice to have" and "too early" for the Australian market just a year ago.</p>
<p>The IDC study, titled "Australia Digital Video Recorder and Media Centre PC 2006-2010 Forecast and Analysis: From Niche to Masses," finds that in 2005, the combined DVR and MCE PC market reached 202,510 shipment units. In addition MCE PC shipments will account for 25% of all consumer PCs shipped in 2010, representing a 2005–2010 Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 92.1%, to reach a shipment of 347,500 units in 2010.</p>
<p>The study is IDC's five-year forecast of the different DVR platforms. The market dynamics between the different DVR platforms offered by CE vendors (e.g., DVR/DVD combo and standalone terrestrial DVR), service providers (SPs) (e.g. cable/satellite/IPTV DVR set-top box [STB]) and PC-based DVR platforms (e.g., Microsoft Media Centre Edition PCs) are also examined.</p>
<p>CE vendors continue to focus on a high-quality entertainment experience by bringing to market top-notch devices with high definition (HD) capabilities, while IT vendors are collaborating with content owners and aggregators to tie content to the media centre PC (MCE PC), a PC-based DVR platform. SPs, such as pay-TV operators, already have a device that is tied to their content (e.g. FOXTEL's iQ), yet they will face competition from potential IPTV entrants (i.e. telcos), who will definitely make the IPTV DVR STB a priority in their strategy of positioning the device as the home gateway.</p>
<p>For example, Verizon first rolled out IPTV in mid 2005, and in order to establish the DVR device as the media hub, Verizon has bundled Media Manager software with the DVR. The Media Manager software detects photos and music files on the PC, and organises the content for presentation on the TV via the DVR.</p>
<p>"Given the heated competition from both IT vendors and SPs, there is an increasing need for CE vendors to go beyond simply selling a top-notch device. To do so they should explore opportunities to work with SPs in developing next-generation DVRs that is tied to content distribution," said Sophie Lo, IDC's Analyst for Consumer Digital Markets. "To position the DVR as the media hub, interoperability with other devices around the home is essential. Going forward, the DVR should be integrated with the PC, with capabilities to access online entertainment services, as well as interoperability with mobile video devices," added Ms Lo.</p>
<p>However, for IT vendors and SPs' vision of a centralised media hub to become a reality, several pieces of the digital home needs to come together — digital content, broadband penetration, and networked CE devices. Content remains the key enabler of the entertainment hub. "Without new entertainment services to be accessed through its platform, an MCE PC, for example, remains little more than a traditional PC used for productivity and basic computing applications," Ms. Lo noted.</p>
<p>IDC Definitions
IDC divides the DVR market into five segments:</p>
<p># Cable DVR STB. This segment includes cable STBs that have internal hard disk drives to enable DVR functionality. These boxes are typically leased to the cable subscriber for a nominal monthly fee.</p>
<p># Satellite DVR STB. Similar to the cable DVR, these devices combine a hard disk drive with a digital satellite STB.</p>
<p># IPTV DVR STB. IPTV, defined as a broadcast and/or on-demand digital pay-TV service delivered via IP over broadband, is an emerging competitor of traditional cable and satellite services. IDC expects DVR-enabled IPTV STBs to be deployed by SPs.</p>
<p># Standalone/terrestrial DVR. This segment is comprised of DVR devices that are not tied to a pay-TV service and are not part of the DVR/DVD combo segment (defined below). Included in this segment are devices such as Sony's SVRHD 700 and LG's LST-5403P, which are used for the reception of free-to-air digital terrestrial television.</p>
<p># DVR/DVD combo. The combo segment includes DVD players and DVD recorders that have an internal hard disk drive to enable DVR functionality. This segment is overwhelmingly comprised of DVR/DVD recorder combos. These devices allow for video content to be recorded and stored on the hard disk drive and subsequently archived onto a DVD.</p>
<p>IDC research:</p>
<p>If you would like further information or to purchase IDC research, please contact Gary Clarke, IDC Associate VP of Sales via email or phone 02 9925 2226.</p>
<p>For press enquiries please contact:
Sophie Lo
Market Analyst, Consumer Digital Markets
Phone: 61 2 9925 2206
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