It's estimated that there are 425 million devices connected to the Internet in U.S. homes, according to the latest market study by The NPD Group. They found that while personal computers are still the primary connected device, numerous others are diminishing the PC’s relevance to the broadband content marketplace.
This trend is being fueled by devices such as gaming consoles and blu-ray disc players adding to the number of Internet connected HDTVs -- and direct IP connectivity to a Smart TV set.
Strong consumer retail sales in developing categories -- such as tablets and smartphones -- are also impacting the traditional PC’s share of Internet connected devices.
By the end of 2013, a shift towards more screen-sharing across devices is expected. Smaller screens such as the smartphone have the greatest reach now with an estimated 133 million users -- with tablets contributing another 31.8 million screens.
The development of the shared screen experience, by diverting content
from a smaller screen to the TV, is converging device ecosystems and
will allow for over-the-top (OTT) content to become even more prominent
on the TV.
"Mobile is adding another dimension powered by screen sharing technologies that allows users to project their tablet or smartphone onto their TV," said John Buffone, director at The NPD Group.
Through 2013, multi-screen and multi-device synergy will lead the growth in the broader connected device market, but only if services consumers desire are delivered in a simplistic manner.
In this connected world, content providers and consumer technology OEMs need to determine the optimal mix of services and have them on the right devices.
More than 4,000 U.S. consumers, age 18 and older were surveyed in the fourth quarter of 2012 for the NPD study. The number of installed and internet connected devices includes those that deliver broadband applications such as computers, tablets, smartphones, HDTVs, Blu-ray Disc Players, video game consoles, and streaming media set top boxes.