DTH pushes pay-TV to over 21% penetration in Ecuador

Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 16-12-2013

Direct-to-home (DTH) platforms were behind the growth in Ecuador's pay-TV during Q3, driving the sector to 21.71% penetration and nearly 900,000 subscriptions.

The satellite services top a market in which DirecTV shows the greatest growth.

According to latest report from Supertel, Ecuador's telecom authority, 3.4 million people watched TV through a cable or satellite platform, a 5.65% growth compared to Q2. And pay-TV subscriptions don't seem to be slowing, after nearly a million viewers were added since last year.
When Supertel started to measure pay-TV penetration in 2003, barely 5% of the population had this service at home. Pay-TV really started to take off in 2011, when the penetration rate was still around 11%.
Currently, 49% of viewers use satellite platforms, which have 436,000 subscriptions. The cable platforms have 393,000 customers (43%) and the terrestrial service 68,000 (7%).
The capital district of Pichincha (Quito) has 818,000 viewers and one of the highest penetration rates of the country (29%). The Galápagos Islands top the penetration figure (35%) due to their low population (27,000 inhabitants). On the flip side is Cotopaxi, one the poorest regions of the country, with only 6% of its 440,000 inhabitants covered by pay-TV.
Regarding companies, the market is clearly dominated by DirecTV, which has 35% of the country's pay-TV audience, followed by CNT-TV with 13%. Regional and local platforms share the rest of the cake, with cable companies being especially important in the capital district.