Worldwide ownership of connected TV devices (including smart TVs, smart blu-ray players, IP-enabled game consoles and digital media streamers) grew 7% quarter-on-quarter in Q2 2014 and% versus the same period in 2013 to reach 500 million units.

The growing demand for devices that facilitate the streaming of online video to the large screen TV is creating a highly competitive environment with no fewer than 16 major technology brands accounting for 90% of devices in use according to Strategy Analytics’ Connected Home Devices (CHD) service report, Global Connected TV Device Tracker: Q2 2014.

Other key findings from the report include: one in four Connected TV Devices installed in homes around the world is a Sony branded product while the combined footprint of Sony, Samsung, Nintendo and Microsoft accounts for 60% of all devices in use.

Samsung enjoyed the highest unit increase to its installed base of Connected TV Devices during the quarter while Google’s Connected TV Device footprint grew faster than any other brand from Q1 to Q2 2014.

Apple remained the leading brand within the global Digital Media Streamer market in Q2 2014 although its share dropped to under 30% for the first time in the face of competition from Google’s Chromecast, Amazon’s Fire TV and Roku.

“Connected TV Devices fulfill a growing consumer desire to access OTT content on the big screen in the home,” commented David Watkins, service director, connected home devices.

“While Game Console vendors and the major TV brands have the largest footprint of such devices, major IT and Internet brands such as Apple, Google and Amazon are starting to build up a significant base of lower cost media streaming boxes and dongles from which they can tap into the online TV audience to advance their own living room strategy”.

Eric Smith, Analyst, Connected Home Devices added: “Game Consoles were until very recently the dominant Connected TV Device installed in the living room. However, Q2 2014 marked the first time that there are more Smart TVs installed in homes globally than IP-enabled game consoles and Smart TVs will now move on to become the dominant connected TV Device in the living room in terms of ownership. The challenge for Smart TV vendors moving forwards will be to grow the number of active users and to do this they must ensure that their platforms remain relevant and up-to-date – certainly no easy task given the lengthy TV replacement cycles”.