TV Industry Facing Major Disruption over the Next Few Years

Traditional broadcasters will come under threat from new business models, technologies and new ways of connecting with viewers

  • Mobile will drive 4K usage, adding to network traffic congestion
  • TV everywhere to face major disruption in coming years
  • Netflix’s European success shows the way ahead for broadcasters and telcos

11 September 2014: This year’s World Cup shows that the dream of TV everywhere has become a reality, says analyst firm CCS Insight. However, ahead of this year’s IBC event in Amsterdam, the company warns that the TV industry will face major disruption over the next few years. Traditional broadcasters will come under threat from new business models, technologies and new ways of connecting with viewers.

Paolo Pescatore, Director Apps & Media at CCS Insight, said: “The promise of multiscreen TV everywhere services is finally here and this summer’s sporting events are a good indication that the future of live TV will be driven by sports and news, with 4K playing an increasing role. This is a very exciting market and we expect to see new players with new technologies emerging at this year’s IBC.”

More observations on the future of the broadcast industry from CCS Insight

Mobile to drive 4K usage and a surge in network traffic

Paolo Pescatore said: “Slow replacement cycles for TVs mean that 4K has yet to become widely adopted. We believe that mobile and tablet manufacturers will lead the charge for 4K usage, bring out more devices with cameras, screens and chipsets capable of 4K recording, playback and upload.”

“Leading online video providers such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer and Sky Go should think mobile first when it comes to 4K. The challenge they face is to ensure that content is optimised for mobile devices. Consumers’ insatiable appetite for mobile viewing was illustrated by the record-breaking number of mobile viewers for this year’s World Cup. Greater demand for mobile viewing will lead to faster roll-out of LTE broadcast technology by mobile network operators. LTE broadcast will help the operators deliver video more efficiently outside the home.”

Evolution of the set-top box

Paolo Pescatore explains: “The set-top box is having a minor resurgence, thanks to small gadgets like Google’s Chromecast and Roku’s streaming players. These products offer viewers better access to online services than the mediocre apps offered by consumer electronics giants on TV sets.”

“But in the long term, it’s not certain that triple-play and quad-play service providers will continue supporting set-top boxes. These providers are in a strong position to offer a cloud-based multiscreen service without the need for any special hardware. As we’ve seen in other IT industries, virtualisation could play a major role in cutting costs and increasing profits.”


“The success of Netflix in Europe should be seen as an opportunity rather than a threat by broadcasters and content creators. It has shown that audiences are willing to pay for TV programming, especially in countries with weak take-up of traditional pay-TV services.”

“Many European countries offer good broadband rates, but pay-TV services are still in their infancy. This means conditions are right for providers to offer a Netflix-like video service. We see telecom providers as better-placed to capitalise on this opportunity, thanks to their huge numbers of customers.”

Innovation in TV user interfaces and the rise of big data

“The user interface will become the cornerstone of the TV Industry. The new BBC iPlayer, Sky’s revamped electronic programme guide and Netflix’s interface all show that providers are moving toward a uniquely customised TV service. As the competition between established broadcasters and new challenger’s increases, every provider will look to enhance their customer profiling, increase engagement and help users discover more content. This points toward big data playing a central role for broadcasters and content creators.”

About CCS Insight

CCS Insight is a global analyst company focussing on the mobile, Internet and media industries. It provides comprehensive services that are tailored to meet the needs of individual clients, helping them make sense of the connected world. Follow CCS Insight on Twitter.

For further information contact:

Hugo Deacon
0207 861 2842

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