Growing preference for OTT content is catalysing demand for streaming media devices and Smart TVs, according to Global Smart TV and Streaming Media Devices Markets, Forecast to 2021, a part of Frost & Sullivan’s Digital Media Growth Partnership Service programme.
The market, which slowed down during 2014-15 fiscal, is now ready to match consumer expectations by offering seamless accessibility to on-demand content through a new generation of competitively priced streaming devices. Major market contenders are embracing strategic collaboration to increase their footprint. For instance, Smart TV manufacturers such as Samsung, TCL, LG, Sony and Panasonic are developing apps in collaboration with streaming media device manufacturing companies such as Roku, Apple and Amazon.
“High-efficiency video coding (HEVC), 4000 pixels (4K) and high dynamic range (HDR) will drive sales and shorten upgrade cycles, but competition will continue to intensify,” said Digital Media Research Analyst Avni Rambhia. “Their agility and ease of replacement continue to provide streaming devices a distinct competitive edge over Smart TVs.”
The report finds that the Smart TV market, which stood at 190 million devices in 2016, will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 5.1 per cent between 2016 and 2021, even as the price per unit steadily decreases. Google, with 33.1 per cent share, will lead the streaming media devices market, followed by Apple with 31.7 per cent and Roku with 15.2 per cent.
While the streaming media devices and Smart TV market is meeting consumer expectations in terms of ease of viewership and usability, it has not yet been able to offer a unified and intuitive search facility. Further, frequent updates are required to make the user interface of consumer-facing devices seamlessly operable. As a result, consumers find it difficult to use the devices to their full potential, which, in turn, can dampen interest in these services.
“The primary screen will continue to play a dominant role in content consumption, but content will increasingly be discovered and played back from devices other than the set-top box,” observed Digital Media Research Analyst V Aravindh. “The key to capitalising on this demand is to refine user experience and content inventory on connected devices to be at par with the quality and consistency of a fully managed experience.”