Dutch digital TV connections grow to more than 6 million

Dutch digital TV connections grow to more than 6 million

The number of digital TV connections in the Netherlands grew by 2.7 percent during the fourth quarter of 2011 to 6.05 million on 31 December 2011, according to Telecompaper’s quarterly Dutch Television Subscribers report. The total includes 3.42 million cable TV subscribers who have an analogue TV connection as well.

Digital TV is now used by 77 percent of all TV subscribers in the Netherlands. Ziggo was the largest digital TV provider, winning some market share last year, followed by KPN, UPC and CanalDigitaal. Most consumers receive digital TV via cable networks. Cable accounted for almost 57 percent of digital TV connections in Q4, although it lost some market share due to growing adoption of IPTV and FTTH services. Terrestrial and satellite were the second and third most popular digital technologies, but both also lost market share in Q4. IPTV and FTTH were able to increase their share of the digital TV market, ending the quarter as the fourth and fifth largest technologies.

“After 13 percent annual growth in 2011, we expect the number of digital TV connections to grow by another 11 percent in 2012,” said Telecompaper analyst and report author Kamiel Albrecht. “This will lead to a total of around 6.7 million digital TV connections at the end of 2012.”

Digital TV growth is driven by an increasing number of operators offering triple-play services, such as Vodafone offering services via FTTH networks. Another driver is ‘second screen’ TV services, which allow digital TV subscribers to watch the TV service also on their tablets, computers or mobile phones. The enhanced viewing experience, especially on tablets, may increase consumer interest in digital services and rive the shift away from analogue. Most of the major Dutch TV providers have launched such services. KPN lead the way, adding live TV services to its mobile apps in September 2012 and launching a nationwide TV advertising campaign focusing on the second screen possibilities in March 2012. Ziggo enhanced its iPhone/iPad app with TV services at the end of 2011, and KPN brand Telfort launched its own app in February 2012. UPC is also expected to follow soon with enhancements to its iPhone and iPad apps, possibly alongside the launch of its broadband set-top box later in 2012.

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