Digital set-top box sales reach 100 million

Digital set-top box sales reach 100 million

Sales driven by impending digital switchover in the US

Worldwide sales of digital TV set-top boxes broke through the 100 million barrier in 2007, according to the latest research from Strategy Analytics.

The analyst firm's report found that sales reached 102.4 million units last year, an annual increase of 12 per cent.

Strategy Analytics said that IPTV's market share rose to 5.9 per cent, compared to 3.6 per cent in 2006. Cable's share rose to 36.2 per cent, while satellite and terrestrial shares declined.

The report predicts a surge in demand for digital terrestrial set-top boxes in 2008, driven by the impending digital switchover in the US. Annual global sales of all digital TV set-top boxes will reach nearly 200 million units by 2012.

"We expect the Asia-Pacific region to overtake North America and Europe in 2008, accounting for a third of this year's 129 million sales," said Peter King, director of the Connected Home Devices division at Strategy Analytics.

"Sales of digital terrestrial TV boxes in Europe have now [reached a] plateau as consumers begin to transition to integrated digital TV sets, but this pattern is unlikely to prevent overall market growth across all platforms."

David Mercer, principal analyst at Strategy Analytics, added: "The set-top box remains the key gateway to advanced digital television services around the world.

"Added value services such as high-definition TV, digital video recording and internet video are all set to drive further growth in this strategically important sector."