Global pay-TV revenue forecast sees cable tumbling as IPTV, satellite grow

By Jim O'Neill on May 13 2015 at 5:30 AM

Cable-TV revenues worldwide will drop from 46% of total pay-TV revenues to 40% in 2020, a new report says, with satellite pay-TV becoming the top revenue generator this year.

The study, from Digital TV Research, forecasts cable TV will see revenues decline to $81.9 billion from their peak of $93.8 billion in 2012; satellite is expected to grow to $94.8 billion in 2020.

Digital cable-TV revenues in the U.S. will fall to $34.1 billion in 2020, a decline of $8.9 billion from 2014 levels. But the U.S. isn’t alone in seeing digital revenues drop, as 20 other countries are forecast to see declines.

China will increase its revenues by $2.1 billion to $8.9 billion and Japan by $2.0 billion to $5.1 billion. India will add $3.2 billion in digital cable TV revenues to take its total to $4.3 billion.

But IPTV will remain the fastest growing platform globally, seeing revenues increase from a 10% share of the global market to 13% over the same period. IPTV revenues are expected to climb to $28.9 billion by 2020 from $19.8 billion in 2014, and triple the 2010 revenue totals.

One third of those revenues – about $9.5 billion -- is expected to be generated by U.S. operators like AT&T, Verizon and CenturyLink, up $1.3 billion form 2014. Canadian IPTV operators are forecast to see $2.3 billion in revenue, with China ($2.1 billion) and Japan following.

Satellite TV revenues will reach $94.8 billion in 2020, with the U.S. remaining the top satellite TV market. Brazil will be second by 2020 ($6.8 billion); having overtaken the UK in 2013. India will add the most satellite TV revenues ($2.5 billion, moving from tenth to fifth place) between 2014 and 2020. However, the US will fall by $421 million, Canada by $805 million and France by $232 million.

Stay tuned.

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