Findings from market research firm Dataxis suggest that in 2016, for the first time since television was introduced in Latin America, more people will be accessing digital terrestrial TV (DTT) than traditional, analogue free-to-air broadcasts in the region.
By the end of 2012, Dataxis projects that there will be 12.3 million households actively receiving DTT transmissions in Latin America’s seven largest markets, equivalent to 9.4 per cent of TV households in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela. DTT adoption has been accelerating in Latin America, particularly since 2010, a trend that is expected to continue over the next few years.
By the end of 2017, 31 million households (nearly 22 per cent of the population owning a TV set) will be using a combination of standalone set-top boxes and integrated digital TVs to decode free-to-air DTT broadcasts. This means that, in the medium term, DTT adoption will surpass the number of households subscribing to digital cable television services in Latin America, trailing only digital satellite TV subscribers.
“The big picture of the state of DTT in Latin America looks more like a collage than a coherent photography right now,” said Juan Pablo Conti, senior analyst at Dataxis and author of the report – DTT in Latin America, 2012-2017. “While some countries such as Mexico decided very early on about the technology they would use to deploy their infrastructure but are still several years away from offering 100 per cent coverage, others such as Argentina only really started to work on DTT a couple of years ago and already have about 70 per cent of the population covered by the technology.”
Brazil will be the country recording the greatest number of DTT households in Latin America: about 65 per cent of the region’s DTT homes in 2017. Mexico will be the second-largest market with 10.3 per cent, and Argentina will be the third-largest market with 8 per cent.
Dataxis projects that, by 2017, DTT will be the most popular television reception platform among TV households without a pay-TV subscription in Argentina, Brazil and Venezuela.