Lack of connected in connected TV in UK

Editor ©RapidTVNews | 30-04-2012

Only a third of connected TVs in UK bought for connectivity; only half of smart TV owners know what a smart TV is; and as much as a quarter never use it to connect to the Internet: such is the state of the UK connected TV industry right now according to YouGov.

The research firm’s survey of the UK’s TV habits punctures some of the hype currently surrounding the connected TV industry and revealed that the in truth the most common reason for intending to buy a smart TV is simply having a more up-to-date TV. This was cited by half of potential purchasers. Moreover even among those who had a connected TV, the most important quality attributed to it by those surveyed was picture quality (96%) followed by the size of the screen (93%) then sound quality (89%).

For those with a connected TV, Sony was the most popular brand with over a third (36%) of the market, followed by Samsung (33%) then Panasonic (16%). Of those planning to purchase a connected TV, two-thirds (62%) said they would buy a Samsung followed by Sony (48%) and Panasonic (40%). Even though it has yet to be launched, an Apple connected TV was cited by over a quarter (26%) as the brand they planned to buy.

Explained Dan Brilot, YouGov’s Media Consulting Director: “The ‘smart’ part of a Smart TV is not yet the main reason people are buying them; it’s more about future-proofing their TV set in the same way that lots of people bought HD TVs even before HD channels were available…We see the profile (in terms of tech adoption) as very similar between iPad and Smart TV owners at the moment. These are the kind of people who are willing to make a big ticket purchase without quite realising what they’ve bought.”

YouGov warned that manufacturers need to understand what the USP of a Smart TV is, either understanding a current need or creating one – citing Apple as the kind of company who does such things well – rather than bundling together different technologies without what it called the necessary thought as to how they might be used together.

“Sony is seen as the quality or premium brand favoured by the early tech adopters – late twenty- or thirty-something men – but Samsung is the brand working the hardest and most successfully to bring Smart TV to the masses through its advertising campaigns as well as leading the way in the availability of apps on the sets,” Brilot said. “Although nine in ten Smart TV owners are satisfied with them, one thing all manufacturers need to focus on is the user interface. This feature has the biggest disparity between importance and performance.”