Rosy forecasts for consumer use of 4K or Ultra-HD video are overly optimistic, says TDG. While 4K will ultimately reach the mainstream, it will be a niche market for five years, with widespread viewing of 4K content arriving in 2019.
OTT streaming video will be the short-term driver of 4K, and pay-TV operators will likely follow.
The U.S. tablet and smartphone video viewer audiences have grown steadily over the past two years and are poised to continue increasing at a faster rate than the adoption curve of those devices.
Seizing this opportunity, programmers and marketers are increasing the amount of video they produce for mobile.
The video gaming shift to digital in Europe has been happening for a few years, and mobile is rapidly increasing its share of the video gaming market in Germany. Smartphone and tablet gaming app revenues in Germany came in at €465 million ($620 million) in 2014, representing year-over-year growth of nearly 33 percent.
People who view long-form video content on their mobile devices appreciate the new higher resolution displays. Quad HD (2K) screens currently occupy the premium end of the smartphone market. According to ABI Research, by 2015 we will likely see Ultra HD (4K) capable mobile devices.
Mobile devices with 4K screens are forecast to reach 478 million units by 2019.
With 19% of millennials living without pay-TV and 98% of those saying they have no intention of getting it, pay-TV providers are in for a tough time convincing them otherwise. These young viewers have grown up in the interactive world of the Internet and mobile phones.
The passive television experience is simply not interesting to them.
Among U.S. college students surveyed, 80% of male respondents played online games at least weekly, and just over half of that group did so at least once a day. Female students showed slightly lower usage, but it was still significant. Nearly 70% turned their attention to digital games at least weekly.
Over-the-top (OTT) video entertainment services such as Netflix, VUDU, and M-GO, which exclusively distribute content over the Internet, are more eager to embrace 1080p and Ultra HD for connected consumer electronics devices.
Meanwhile, pay-TV distributors are more likely to settle for 720p for their “TV Everywhere” offering.
Now that the Web has made multi-platform programming possible, content creators like AMC, Scripps and Bravo are finding more clever ways to keep those viewers around.
“Transmedia storytelling has upped our network to an entirely new level, and it’s about platforms,” says Lisa Hsia, EVP digital for Bravo.
Since the end of the depression in 2009 typical U.S. family income has fallen 6% in real terms. During the same period the amount paid by consumers for pay-TV has increased in price between 12%-20%, and programming costs much more than that.
Under these conditions an economic cord cutting increase looks to be inevitable.
Digital video in the Nordics will account for more than half of all home video spend this year — making it the first market to reach the digital tipping point. Overall, the global installed base of TV-centric connected devices surpassed one billion units in 2013 and will exceed two billion by 2017.
Global ownership of personal devices has soared from 2.8 billion in 2013, and on track to reach 4.4 billion by 2017.