Mobile TV to take off as SA TV sector grows 18.8%

Rebecca Hawkes ©RapidTVNews | 16-10-2011

South Africa's television market grew 18.8% in 2010, the largest rise it has seen for five years, as it embarks on a new period of growth, according to a new report from PricewaterhouseCooper (PwC).
Last year's market growth was spurred by a 25.2% increase in subscription services thanks to the launch of Top TV and Multichoice DStv Compact. Top TV attracted 200,000 subscribers within seven months of launch, while 375,000 people subscribed to the DStv Compact service.
The number of pay-TV subscribers in South Africa reached 3 million in 2010, and PwC forecasts this will rise to 4.27 million by 2015 in its South African Entertainment and Media Outlook 2011-2015.
Mobile TV in South Africa is also expected to grow substantially driven by the growing availability of tablets. Multichoice launched its mobile service last year, and is reportedly readying to launch its mobile TV service later in 2011.
PwC estimates there will be 20,000 mobile TV subscribers in South Africa by the end of 2011. This figure is forecast to grow to 250,000 by 2015, attracting an estimated revenue of R102 million.
The report says: "in terms of privilege, many consumers would like unlimited access to content for free but are happy to pay for services that provide additional value and the ability to 'jump the queue', such as special offers, advance information on discounts and earlier access to content,"
The rise of digital media is certainly making its mark, with 41.4% growth in internet use in 2010 thanks to increased broadband penetration in South Africa. "Social media, mobility and the explosion of application software have already had profound impacts and these will continue to grow," said PricewaterhouseCooper.
"The new landscape is already emerging," added the report. "Across the leading digital markets, we are seeing pipe owners, content owners, device manufacturers, operating systems and application developers working together in varying configurations."
Overall, the entertainment and media sector of South Africa grow by 21.1% in 2010, up from 3.7% in 2009, according to PwC. "This large growth was fuelled principally by spending associated with the 2010 FIFA World Cup," said the PwC.
Sport was understandably the fastest growing sector in South Africa's entertainment space in 2010, with a huge rise of 85.4% due to the nation hosting the World Cup that year.