IPTV operators are starting to find their sweet spot for subscriber acquisition as consumer spending recovers globally and technical issues get ironed out, according to a new report from UK firm Point Topic.
The number of worldwide subscriptions closed in on 60mn by the end of 2011, with the last quarter seeing the biggest three month increase in subscribers yet, according to the report.
“The year end is often the strong quarter but in combination with the global recovery in consumer spending and the will and technical ability to deliver a service, IPTV is really starting to find the sweet spot,” comments Oliver Johnson, CEO of Point Topic. “In addition we’ve seen a growth in the Average Revenue per User (ARPU) the operators have managed to generate.”
Point Topic believes that IPTV is the “stickiest” of residential telecoms services, and describes it as a necessity for most ISPs. It also currently offers the best opportunity to increase revenues, according to the research firm.
“Globally ARPU increased by just under 2% in the year, total revenues were up over 30% and with the continued subscriber growth it looks like a very strong positive set of indicators,” added Mr. Johnson. “It is an extremely competitive market however. The technical path to deployment is well trodden but in combination with high equipment and content costs, and the increasing competition in the market IPTV is not a ‘slam dunk’ for operators.
“Offering the right bundles for their consumers in a particular market, signing the right deals and maintaining a customer base in the face of global competition will be the mark of a successful ISP in the next few years. Get it wrong and they won’t see growth, get it right and their prize will be an income base worth several multiples of its yearly value.”