Summary:

It’s a long way away from being in every home, but IPTV take-up is rising, and fast: IPTV connections reached the 19.98 million mark in Q40…

image It’s a long way away from being in every home, but IPTV take-up is rising, and fast: IPTV connections reached the 19.98 million mark in Q408, across 60 countries worldwide with nine countries recording growth of more than 100 percent year on year. That’s according to research from Informa Telecoms & Media, which tomorrow kicks off its IPTV World Forum in London. The research, conducted by Intelligence Centre, includes figures from 90 IPTV networks but, with another 20 that didn’t provide data, the final penetration figure is sure to exceed 20 million…

France remains the world leader in IPTV subscribers, with 5.93 million as of Q408 — which leaves the UK, in 13th place with 490,000, with some considerable ground to make up. The USA is second with just over three million and China is third with just over two million.

As with social networking or search, the size of the figures are undisputedly massive. But what the assembled execs and CEOs at the forum will want to know is how to turn growth into higher average revenue per customer, and how to offset the investment in consumer-facing technology and next-gen broadband networks that IPTV needs if it is to become a genuinely mainstream option. If all goes to plan the BBC’s Canvas project, with its open standard IPTV technology, could be a real help to commercial providers.

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Some pre-forum news: pay-TV operator Viasat, which is owned by the Modern Times Group and serves Scandinavia and the Baltic nations, has added ITPV technology provider NDS’ Progressive Download technology to its subscription VOD service ViasatPlusHD. The technology, which allows users to download movies or TV series over broadband and downloads straight to set-top-boxes, reduces buffering time, NDS claims.

Check back here for news from the conference floor on Wednesday…

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