Europe ahead of U.S. for smart-TV penetration

Smart TV penetration in Europe is ahead of the U.S., although with significant differences between countries. France has the lead with 42 percent of households having a smart TV, compared with 40 percent in Turkey and Poland, 34 percent in Germany, 28 percent in Italy, 26 percent in Spain and the Netherlands, and the U.K. trailing at just 22 percent. These figures come from Concentra Marketing Research in a survey for the German consumer electronics trade association GFU, while a report by research and advisory firm TDG found that just 25 percent of US households had a smart TV, lagging behind all leading European markets except the UK.

Although penetration was lowest in the U.K., those that did have a smart TV there were most likely to connect it to the Internet, with 86 percent of them having hooked them up. This compares with 79 percent of smart-TV owners in France, 76 percent in the Netherlands, and 58 percent in Germany.

Meanwhile a global study by Boston-based Strategy Analytics indicated a general level of dissatisfaction with smart TVs. There was much greater enthusiasm for tablets, smartphones and other connected devices to access online media, according to a study by the firm’s Digital Home Observatory division, which focuses on user experience and consumer behavior insights and data, tracking how the behavior of eight supposedly advanced user households had changed over the past three years with the arrival of new connected-TV technologies. Although not statistically significant, it provided insight into evolving user behavior at a detailed level. The survey concluded that the fault lay more with OEMs and software developers, who were failing to provide smart-TV users with apps and services that enhance the TV experience.