12.23.2008 08:46 AM
ABI Research sheds light on what’s not going to happen in 2009

IPTV is making great advances globally in the pay-TV market, but the ultimate success of Telco TV is far from certain, according to a newly published white paper from ABI Research.

The paper, “What’s NOT Going to Happen in 2009,” pulls back the covers on what the company’s researchers really think about the latest technologies and trends to reveal their views — sans inhibitions — with a “call ‘em like they see ‘em” candor.

When it comes to IPTV, the paper acknowledges the healthy growth achieved in some markets, most notably, PCCW’s Now Broadband TV in Hong Kong, as well as services from France Telecom and Verizon. The white paper identifies a variety of challenges standing in the way between operators and ultimate success, including specific content-related and technological challenges.

IPTV operators also will have to prevail in the battle with competitive pay-TV service operators to win the hearts and pocketbooks of consumers, the paper says. However, most pay-TV consumers are yet to do their own competitive comparison. At least for 2009, ABI Research doesn’t see IPTV replacing traditional broadcast TV.

The white paper also examines what’s likely to happen with over-the-top video via the broadband Internet to the living room. Here again, ABI Research identifies various challenges that must be overcome for over-the-top video to reach its full potential, but the research group expresses admiration for “lightning speed” at which it moved in 2008 and the expectation that more is to come next year.

ABI Research expects game consoles to be the most important technology to the growth of over-the-top video in the living in 2009 and for some time to come. Deals between game console vendors and content services, such as the one bringing streamed Netflix movies to Microsoft Xbox 360 users, will propel growth in this segment. The research company anticipates about 1 million Xbox Live users will sample the streaming content service of Netflix.

The white paper is available for free from ABI Research. Online registration is required.

For more information, visit http://www.abiresearch.com/whitepaperDL.jsp?id=39.

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