New digital TV 'supercycle' emerging

There is a new 'supercycle' emerging that will change the whole digital TV industry, according to Neil Gaydon, CEO of UK-based set-top box firm, speaking in an interview with The Financial Times.

According to Mr. Gaydon, the recession has proved that consumers still see TV as offering "unrivalled value for money" when it comes to entertainment: When questioning discretionary spend, there are three things people give up last: their mobile phone, broadband and digital TV, he added, saying that consumer demand for high-definition television has proved to be one of the few constants during the ongoing economic downturn.

Pace is currently the third-largest set-top box provider in the world, having been boosted by last year's acquisition of Philips' set-top box business for GB£ 68mn (US$ 111mn), as well as benefiting from problems at rivals Motorola and Thomson, and expects to ship around 16mn units this year to many of the world's leading pay-TV operators.

Howver, Mr. Gaydon adds in the interview that the company's future products are built around expectations that the way we consume TV will be different: “The supercycle is that people aren’t just buying one of these flat panels in their home; they’re buying multiple. For example, DirecTV average 2.8 per house per subscriber and that’s a phenomenon we’re starting to see increase as well. New products that allow people to pause, stop, rewind any TV, watch any content recorded in one room in another room will come in. Further down the line it will probably be streamed to a smartphone.”