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Showing posts from April, 2009

Global Mobile Messaging Market Upside

Worldwide, mobile messaging is a $130 billion industry in 2008, and Portio Research forecasts show that value rising to reach $224 billion by the end of 2013. SMS still totally dominates the messaging mix. Their research forecasts that even in 2013, messaging will still account for approximately 60 percent of all non-voice service revenues worldwide, and within that SMS will account for some 55 percent of all messaging revenues. With mobile data revenues expected to account for between 25 and 30 percent of total operator service revenues worldwide by 2013, that means that messaging will account for approximately 17 percent of total operator service revenues by 2013. SMS will be responsible for approximately 9 percent of total operator service revenues in 2013. Across the planet, everywhere from The Philippines to Croatia, SMS is booming, with forecasts predicting aggressive growth ahead for the next 6 years. The Portio report looks in detail at the massive opportunities that lie ah

PC Shipments in EMEA Have Mixed Results

Following a slow down which started in the final quarter of 2008, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) PC shipments fell to negative trends in the first quarter of 2009 as anticipated. In line with forecasts, the PC market in EMEA displayed its first yearly decline since the 2001 recession, with sales recording –10 percent year-on-year growth in 1Q09, according to data released by IDC. The CEE region remained the most affected bringing down overall EMEA results with a decline in PC shipments of –41 percent, while MEA slowed down as well at –6.1 percent growth. Western Europe held well, however, with shipments decreasing by only –0.5 percent, supported by sustained consumer demand and continued traction for Mini Notebooks. The business market is directly impacted by lower investment levels and consumer spending also slowed down since January, but the traction for Mini Notebooks helped to sustain consumer demand in Western Europe and contain overall market contraction, and will conti

High Growth Video and Social Network Sites

Online engagement by Internet users is deepening, according to a new market study by The Nielsen Company. This increased engagement is in part a result of a shift toward video content and social networking as popular online subcategories. In particular, time spent on social networks and video sites has increased astronomically. Advertisers are starting to positively re-assess the value of the online experience and create more meaningful relationships with consumers. Since 2003, interests of the average online user have shifted significantly. Categories that consisted of portal-oriented browsing sites, such as Shopping Directories and Guides and Internet Tools or Web Services, used to be the top categories for user engagement. However, today the active Internet user tends to prefer sites that contain more specialized content. This change in preferences is seen in the fact that video and social networking sites have moved to the forefront, becoming the two fastest growing categories i

World Digital Terrestrial TV STB Opportunity

The global semiconductor opportunity in standard definition (SD) Digital Terrestrial TV (DTT) Set Top Boxes will peak in 2011 at nearly $500 million. High-definition DTT Set Top Boxes also offer a short term spike in semiconductor opportunity. However, SD DTT Set Top Boxes are the more sustainable opportunity for semiconductor manufacturers, according to the latest market study by In-Stat. "The U.S. analog shut off is driving a surge of HD converter boxes in 2008 and 2009," says Gerry Kaufhold, In-Stat analyst. "However, this bubble will wane, while the SD DTT market continues to grow across a broader set of geographic markets." Their report includes worldwide and regional forecasts for standard definition and HD STB shipments, revenue, bill of materials and component revenue through 2013. Extensive country-level unit/revenue shipment detail for major countries in Europe, North America and Asia -- including HD and DVR segmentation. Plus, the analog shut off timet

Advertising: the Growth was Wishful Thinking

If you already tune out and ignore most forms of advertising, then clearly you're not alone. With the exception of a couple of under-developed regions of the globe, most traditional advertisers have acknowledged that fact. eMarketer reports that the reality has convinced those who were previously hopeful for some sort of a miracle turnaround -- apparently it was wishful thinking. Three major advertising agency buyers around the world are moving beyond their prior denial, and are now forecasting more severe declines in their customer ad spending. Last month, GroupM, a division of WPP, predicted a 4.4 percent decline in global ad spending for 2009. That forecast slide was exceeded by one from Carat Insight, owned by Aegis, which put the worldwide ad spending decline for 2009 at 5.8 percent. ZenithOptimedia, the media-buying unit of Publicis, the world's fourth-largest advertising group, has boldly gone one step further than it's competitors -- by candidly predicting the

STBs in the CE Home Media Server Market

Media server PCs form the majority of the devices used to store and distribute multimedia content in the home. However, set-top boxes (STBs) and consumer electronics (CE) devices such as video game consoles will gain share of the home media server market over the next five years. ABI Research forecasts that in 2010, STBs and CE devices will together account for a little more than 51 million shipments -- roughly a third of the total world market. These categories will continue to grow aggressively over the forecast period to 2014. Much of the new growth in media networking will take place in Europe and the Asia-Pacific region. "STBs and CE devices are the fastest-growing types of home media serving equipment partly because of the tremendous popularity of video game consoles such as the Sony PS3," says senior analyst Jason Blackwell. The growth in the STB segment is largely due to broadband operator's effort to push deeper into the digital home network by providing add

Blu-Ray Disc Player Growth Projections

Global shipments of Blu-ray disc players, excluding PS3, are expected to total nearly 12 million units this year, according to the latest market study by Futuresource Consulting. In last year's crucial Q4 period, three million BD players were shipped globally, which represented more than 50 percent of the total for the year. And the trend is continuing, with our projections showing shipments for Q1 2009 will reach 1.2 million units, significantly up on Q1 2008. All eyes will be on Q4 this year, with Futuresource predicting shipments in excess of six million units in that quarter alone, a healthy year-on-year growth that will successfully propel BD into the next decade. Sales of HD-capable LCD and plasma TVs, and continued dramatic reductions in BD player prices also continue to fuel interest. In the last quarter of 2008, average retail prices for standalone Blu-ray players fell by 15 percent in most major markets and they're going fall by another 25 percent during the course

Expansion for Wireless Backhaul Networks

Anticipated growth with data-intensive mobile multimedia applications is creating demand for increased network investment. Worldwide revenues from backhaul leasing are expected to double over the next 30 months, according to a new market study from ABI Research. The growth curve even accelerates after 2012, resulting in a fivefold revenue increase between 2009 and 2014. According to ABI Research senior analyst Nadine Manjaro, the main driver is the effort by mobile operators to prepare for an upgrade to LTE 4G technology. "Operators might not deploy LTE immediately," she says, "but they know that before they do, they'll have to upgrade their backhaul capacity." Lack of backhaul capacity is the primary bottleneck that can prevent a satisfactory user experience. "AT&T Mobility has found that one iPhone user typically generates as much data traffic as 30 basic feature phone users," notes Manjaro. Wireless network traffic will dramatically increas

IT Buyer Best Practices at Small Businesses

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) in the U.S. are using more diverse information sources to first learn about new IT products, services and suppliers. Despite the growing use of the Internet as a source of information, a trend that will continue, peer group word of mouth still receives high mentions by SMBs, according to a new IDC study. "A major challenge for providers of advanced technology products and services is how best to reach the 7.9 million SMBs in the United States," said Merle Sandler, research manager for SMB Programs at IDC. SMBs use multiple information sources, so technology providers need to develop an effective promotional portfolio to ensure visibility in the places where SMBs turn for IT information -- bearing in mind that their preferences vary by business size, vertical industry, and attitude cluster. Highlights of IDC's market study include: - Word of mouth is most often cited by small businesses (SBs) and medium-sized businesses (MBs)

Consumers Multitasking and Cutting Services

Over 66 million consumers across demographic categories are using the Internet while concurrently watching television, perhaps not fully paying attention to either, according to the latest market study by In-Stat. Based on In-Stat's recent survey, 33 percent of all male respondents, across age groups, reported that they are sometimes using a personal computer simultaneously while watching TV. Among some male age groups the behavior was as high as 50 percent. In contrast, about 25 percent of female respondents reported using a PC while watching TV. "Consumer multitasking represents an important emerging opportunity for the TV industry" says Gerry Kaufhold, In-Stat analyst. Local TV stations, TV networks, pay-TV networks, 24-hour news networks, sports leagues, and music channels, can instantly connect to some of their viewers, right now, on both the TV screen and on a notebook or netbook computer screen. In-Stat's market study found the following: - One-fifth of

SMB Marketers Abandoning Traditional Ads

eMarketer reports that according to a poll of U.S. marketers by Bredin Business Information, the primary challenges in marketing to American small businesses are funding new projects, growing the business with limited resources and increasing awareness. In addition, marketers say the outlook for small business marketing has changed in 2009. They are increasing their online activities, becoming more focused and conducting segmentation research to better target their customers. It is no surprise that the local online marketing space is where many small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are moving their efforts -- and their marketing investment. It's apparent that digital marketing has gained increased adoption at the expense of legacy advertising approaches -- in particular yellow page directory listings and direct mail coupons. The leaders in both forms of mass-media publishing failed to migrate their value proposition to the online model. Clearly, in 2009 more savvy SMB marke

Pay-TV Crisis: an Over the Top Video Threat

According to The Diffusion Group (TDG), PayTV operators must execute three specific tactics in order to survive the threat of emerging competitors and take advantage of their legacy position in the video entertainment value chain. TDG believes that PayTV operators must: - Push existing cable network TV programs online; - Deliver today's Internet-only content and bonus material directly to the television; and - Offer broadband TV services without requiring a traditional PayTV subscription (as a stand-alone service). By executing these three strategies, PayTV operators will enhance their defensive position, gain the attention of the Internet generation, and find an additional $2 billion in annual revenue by 2013. Well, that's if they can move past their current denial of the apparent market trends. Colin Dixon, senior analyst with TDG points to the emerging threat from Over the Top (OTT) video services as the primary reason why PayTV operators must aggressively pursue online

U.S. Mobile PC Data Card Usage Insights

ComScore released the results of a market study of U.S. Internet usage via mobile PC data cards, which showed that the subscriber base began to decelerate noticeably in Q4 2008. The study examined the usage and characteristics of mobile PC data card users through data collected from computers where Internet access via mobile broadband Internet service providers (ISPs) occurred. Mobile broadband employs cellular telecommunication networks, where users pay subscription fees for access and the connection is made using a PC card, built-in adapter, or connections can be tethered via a cell-phone or PDA. PC data card adoption grew 163 percent overall in 2008, slightly ahead of the 157 percent growth rate in 2007, a confirmation of the market's strong growth trajectory. However, despite this rapid adoption curve, Q4 2008 showed the first signs of softness in the market, as sequential quarterly subscriber growth fell to just 5 percent, following sequential growth of 22 percent in Q3 2

Digital Home Networks are Still Too Complex

Growth for home networking products has been slowing in recent years, due to market saturation and price erosion. The decline is partly due to the current global economic slump -- and forecasts for core home networking device revenues indicate a declining market through 2014. However, the network connected media device market segment continues to show growth. The result, according to a new market study from ABI Research, is that total revenues for network connected devices will rise from about $74 billion this year to over $94 billion in 2010. "Network connected media devices such as game consoles, TVs, and set-top boxes offer an opportunity for core networking companies to reorient themselves away from a declining market," says senior analyst Jason Blackwell. Home network device vendors such as Linksys (Cisco) and Netgear, as well as networking silicon vendors such as Broadcom are targeting these growing product categories aimed at home entertainment networking and connec

Digital Radio Growth in Emerging Markets

Regardless of consumer confidence being at its weakest point in long time, the worldwide market for digital radio experienced year-over-year growth of 85 percent between 2007 and 2008, according to the latest market study by In-Stat. The Asia-Pacific region, primarily Korea, was the main driver of the growth seen over this time period. However, a market shift is on the way. "Moving into 2009, developed economies are significantly impacted by the economic turndown. However, developing parts of Asia/Pacific are still experiencing growth in digital radio shipments." says Stephanie Ethier, In-Stat analyst. The reality of the math is that even modest adoption in heavily populous countries such as China and India drives a large impact in global shipments. In-Stat's market study found the following: - Worldwide, the market for both satellite and terrestrial digital radio, combined, will grow to over 55 million unit shipments in 2012. - Key suppliers of semiconductor digit

Mobile Service Active Infrastructure Sharing

According to ABI Research, the worldwide combined savings from mobile service provider active infrastructure sharing could amount to as much as $60 billion over the next five year period. The study finds that operators could enjoy at least 40 percent cost savings in addition to those available from passive site sharing. The distinction between active and passive sharing is important. Passive sharing involves components such as the tower mast or pylons, cables, physical site or rooftop, shelter cabinets, power supply, air-conditioning, alarm systems, etc. Active sharing includes antennas, antenna systems, backhaul transmission systems and the base station equipment itself. Not surprisingly, passive sharing is seen as a safer alternative, but the cost-saving rewards of active sharing are much greater. According to senior analyst Aditya Kaul, "With most countries and regions of the world having more than one operator, network sharing is a logical way of pooling resources for com

Bold Broadband Policy: Yes We Can, America

Try to imagine this scenario, that General Motors and Ford were given exclusive franchises to build America's interstate highway system, and also all the highways that connect local communities. Now imagine that, based upon a financial crisis, these troubled companies decided to convert all "their" local arteries into toll-roads -- they then use incremental toll fees to severely limit all travel to and from small businesses. Why? This handicapping process reduced the need to invest in building better new roads, or repairing the dilapidated ones. But, wouldn't that short-sighted decision have a detrimental impact on the overall national economy? It's a moot point -- pure fantasy -- you say. The U.S. political leadership would never knowingly risk the nation's social and economic future on the financial viability of a restrictive duopoly. Or, would they? The 21st century Global Networked Economy travels across essential broadband infrastructure. The forced

Global Increase in Mobile Messaging Traffic

Communication in the future will be done increasingly through mobile devices. According to TNS Global, 74 percent of the world's digital messages were sent via a mobile device in January 2009, a 15 percent increase over the previous year. In emerging markets, the trend is even more dramatic -- nine out of 10 messages are sent via mobile phone. Some of the growth can be attributed to mobile instant messaging. Thirteen percent of all mobile subscribers used the feature, compared to 41 percent of smartphone users. Other increases in mobile phone usage can be attributed to the abandonment of fixed-line telephone services. "As mobile devices slowly take away usage share from fixed services in developed markets, in emerging markets consumers are more likely to by-pass fixed communications altogether and go straight to mobiles," said Sam Curtis of TNS. As for developed countries, the PC e-mail remains the most popular message method, but its use is decreasing. In Japan, 4

Dynamic Digital Signage with Pico Projectors

Here's something very small, with a market upside that's very big. With a potential addressable market measured in the billions of units, In-Stat is now forecasting the market for pico-projectors to exceed $1.1 billion within five years. Apparently, redesigned mobile phones and accessory projectors will lead the pico-projector market, with computing devices and consumer products following. "As mobile devices add more multimedia capabilities, embedded pico-projectors can add a big-screen experience to a very small device," says David Chamberlain, In-Stat analyst. Technological advances in miniaturization, signal processing, and light sources -- including green laser -- are making pico-projectors a realistic feature for small battery powered devices like cellphones, media players, computing devices, and other consumer electronics. I believe that the applications for handheld projection devices creates yet another interesting impromptu presentation vehicle for peopl

Internet Connected Consumer Electronics

According to the latest market study by Parks Associates, approximately 2.5 million broadband households in the U.S. and Canada are ready to purchase an Internet-connected TV -- if priced at a $100 premium over regular TVs. This market opportunity translates into $250 million in additional revenues for the consumer electronics (CE) industry. Parks Associates' latest consumer study, entitled "Digital Media Evolution," gauges market demand for Internet-connected devices and the applications people want to use in conjunction with this new capability. The study covers digital cameras, TVs, digital photo frames, and Blu-ray players and finds digital TVs have the strongest market potential. The top application consumers want through a connected TV is access to video-on-demand content. At the same time, roughly one-third of broadband households in the U.S. and Canada want on-screen widgets, and 27 percent want to access content stored on their home computers. "Access t

Growth of High-Speed Mobile Data Networks

Mobile broadband technologies apparently played a starring role at the CTIA 2009 show in Las Vegas, as North American mobile service providers continue to build out high-speed data networks -- despite the ongoing economic downturn. In the case of LTE, major operators such as Verizon Wireless are still committed to launching LTE in 2010, although WiMAX has recently taken a hit with Clearwire announcing that it won't launch in any new markets until 2010. "Despite the impact of tough economic times on North America, the deployment of mobile broadband networks -- and customer adoption of the services they enable -- is continuing," says Tammy Parker, principal analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media. Broader availability of smartphones, as well as netbooks and laptops with embedded mobile broadband connectivity, is helping spur demand for high-speed data delivery, leading operators to chart their courses to the next generation of technologies that includes LTE and WiMAX. I

Subscriber Upside for Mobile & WiFi Phones

Smartphones are evolving quickly, and differentiation is becoming increasingly based on software and the operating system (OS) rather than form factor, according to the latest market study by Infonetics Research. Smartphones still compete on hardware features that support key apps like photography or video viewing, but software and applications that enable a user's preferred mobile uses have an increasing influence on device selection -- personalization will be in demand. For instance, the Android platform may be a work in progress, but the first handset to use it, the G1, is attracting high levels of interest, and future models are likely be optimized for key web applications like social networking. Open source platforms like Android are shaping the new competitive landscape. Highlights from the Infonetics study include: - The economic recession had a notable impact on the worldwide mobile phones market in the latter half of 2008, ending in flat manufacturer revenue growth fo

Growth of Digital Cameras in New Devices

Continued uptake of digital cameras in mobile phones, notebook PCs and other CE devices is driving growth in the area-array image sensor market, according to the latest market study by In-Stat. Worldwide unit shipments of image sensors in camera phones continue to rise, mostly as a result of the continuing penetration of dual-camera phones in Asian markets. These phones utilize both a traditional point-and-shoot camera, as well as a second, inward-facing camera for two-way video communication. As in most aspects of advanced mobile phone applications, the Asia-Pacific market continues to lead the way for others to follow. A promising new image sensor application is also taking hold. "Currently a small segment of the market, embedded PC cameras will surpass digital still cameras to become the second-largest application for image sensors by 2011," says Brian O'Rourke, In-Stat analyst. "A few years ago, only Apple incorporated cameras into desktop and laptop computer

Ups and Downs of Local Advertising in U.S.

Local advertising in the U.S. is in for a big change, according to the latest overall industry assessment by eMarketer. The bad news, according to the Kelsey Group and BIA Advisory Services, is that there will be a decline in the local advertising market in 2013 when compared to 2008. "By the end of the forecast period, the overall size of the local advertising market will be considerably smaller than it was at the end of 2008," said Tom Buono of BIA. The research firms predict a negative compound annual -1.4 percent overall growth rate, with the largest drop-off in local ad spending occurring this year. Spending on traditional local media is forecast to dramatically fall from $141.3 billion in 2008 to barely over $112 billion in 2013. The good news is that the local online ad market is growing, and will continue to make up a larger percentage of the local advertising sector. In 2009, nearly 12 percent of local ad spending will be digital, with dollars focused on Internet

Low-Cost Prosumer Video Camcorder Market

The professional video camcorder market experienced a groundswell of activity in EMEA last year, with incremental growth outstripping the previous year's performance by nearly three to one, according to the latest market study by Futuresource Consulting. "In 2008 we saw the development of a pure non-tape pro camcorder segment at the lower end of the market -- a significant milestone for the industry and a core driver for last year's phenomenal growth," says Adam Cox, Senior Market Analyst, Futuresource Consulting. The huge success of the low-cost Sony HVR-HD1000E -- as well as several other entry-level products -- contributed to pro camcorder sector growth in 2008. With new products from Panasonic and JVC due for release in the first half of 2009, further market activity is ensured. "As the price of broadcast quality hardware continues to decrease, professional video production has become available to a wider audience," says Cox. "In particular, th

Outside Plant and Broadband Public Policy

Here's some interesting insights from the Digital Britain interim report. The civil engineering work required to deploy next-generation access (NGA) infrastructure is a significant part of the business case for a major broadband deployment project, and some estimates put it as high as 80 percent of the overall cost. Although it is not the only remedy, providing access to existing ducts, and therefore reducing the cost of deploying fiber for Communication Providers (CPs), is one solution that may lower the barriers to entry for CPs, and therefore support meaningful service provider competition. Ofcom commissioned Analysys Mason to survey a number of UK cities and towns to assess the level of occupancy of the telecoms duct infrastructure, and to investigate the practical issues that CPs may face if deploying new fiber cables -- using the incumbent service provider's existing infrastructure. The main objective of the survey was to make an indicative assessment of the duct infr

Broadband & Multichannel TV Subscriptions

Informa Telecoms & Media published the latest market study results from broadband and multichannel TV subscription numbers. Fiber-to-the-x subscriptions approach 50 million, and IPTV advances to 20 million. According to current research, global fixed broadband subscriptions stood at 422 million at the end of 2008, adding nearly 68 million subscriptions in the year and 16 million in the final quarter. The biggest access technology remains DSL (65 percent of the total), but FTTx (11 percent) registered its biggest in year gain to date, adding over 11 million subscriptions -- almost exactly the same number as cable broadband (21 percent) -- now stands over 48 million. The growth of FTTx is part explained by robust growth in Asia-Pacific: the region added 20 percent more subscriptions in 2008 than in 2007. In addition, nine of the world's 10 largest FTTx operators are in the region. Western Europe has seen broadband growth stagnate, as all but five of its 30 countries now excee