Netflix key to US leadership in smart TV usage
May 15, 2012
By Colin Mann
In the wake of an unfavourable customer satisfaction report, there is better news for online entertainment subscription service Netflix, with the suggestion that the availability in the US of strong online video services such as Netflix means that owners of connected or smart TVs in the US are more than three times more likely to be regular users of the Internet capabilities of their TVs than those in Europe.
More than one-third of US smart TV owners now use their TV set to connect to the Internet at least once a week, compared to only 9 per cent of European smart TV owners according to the latest research from the Strategy Analytics Digital Home Observatory. The report – US & Western Europe Connected TV Owner Survey – identifies the availability in the US of services such as Netflix as one of the key reasons for these marked differences between the US and European markets.
“It is essential that smart TV manufacturers and their partners develop compelling video services and content in the local language for non-English speaking markets,” says Caroline Park, Senior Analyst and the report’s author. “The success of Netflix with smart TV owners in the US has demonstrated that such services can drive usage of smart TV services and apps.”
The study also found that 33 per cent of smart TV owners in Europe and 22 per cent in the US had never set up their smart TV to connect to the Internet. In addition, a smaller number of owners in each market had set up the Internet connection but had stopped using the Internet connectivity altogether.
The report found that only one-third of smart TV owners across both the US and Europe had bought the TV because of its ability to connect to the Internet. In spite of this, 65 per cent of smart TV owners now say that Internet connectivity would be an important consideration when they next bought a TV set.