Connected TVs in half of US Web homes



| 28 August 2015

Analyst NPD is reporting what it says is the passing of a key milestone in the connected TV industry during the second quarter of 2015 with the news that half of US Internet homes own such a device.

According to the Connected Intelligence Connected Home Entertainment Report the total number of homes that have a connected TV device such as a smart TV, video game console, streaming media player and Blu-ray Disc player is up to 46 million, a four million home increase compared with Q2 of 2105.

NPD calls out the success of the smart TV industry as a primary driver of this growth, with 45% of TVs sold in the US during the second quarter of 2015 supporting apps, up from 34% in the previous year and 24% in Q2 2013. As more app-ready TVs enter homes, the rate of consumers actually connecting these displays to the Internet also increased. In Q2, just over two-thirds of all installed Internet capable TVs were connected, up from 61% in 2014 and 45% two years ago.

In the second quarter of 2015 Netflix remained the most commonly used online video service among homes with connected TVs, followed by YouTube, Amazon Prime/Instant Video, Hulu and HBO GO/NOW. Compared with Q2 2014, more connected TV users reported using each of these services. HBO's commitment to an over-the-top footprint with their GO and NOW platforms resulted in them being the first TV network to reach the top five ranking, displacing Crackle.

"The increase in the number of homes that use a TV with apps is the result of three very important factors," said NPD Connected Intelligence executive director John Buffone, explaining the state of the market. "Sales of TVs with apps have skyrocketed, their user interfaces have improved and there has been a surge in available premium services and programming. We're living in the Golden Age of TV where significant investments are being made in developing original series. This is being enabled by growth in online services such as Hulu and Amazon Video as well as industry leading TV networks benefiting from the large pay-TV subscriber base and fast developing over-the-top (OTT) audience that uses apps on TV. The collaboration between TV manufacturers and content providers is imperative to keeping the connected TV ecosystem growing, both through devices and content."