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DTT STBs Ready for 'Blast Off'

The worldwide retail value of all Digital Terrestrial TV (DTT) set-top boxes will "blast off" during 2006, and surge to more than $10 billion by 2009, according to a recent research report from In-Stat. Perhaps surprisingly, the current world leader in consumption of HD DTT boxes is Australia --with North America coming in second.

Europe has been the unit "shipment and market value leader" for several years, and In-Stat says it's poised to become the long-term dominating force if the 2006 World Cup Football (soccer) tournament starting next spring provides a widespread incentive for purchasing new DTT products, as is generally expected. Japan and China also have emerging markets for DTT STBs that also support HD.

In-Stat said the big trend in the emergence of DTT STBs will be built-in PVR (or DVR) functionality because multi-function digital recording provides an added convenience--perhaps soon bordering on necessity--for end-users who need to navigate ever-expanding and sometimes complex layers of programming services.