Study: 37M HDTV Households by ‘08

Author:
Publish date:

Some 37 million households will receive HD programming by 2008, according to a new report from Strategy Analytics Inc.

"The Transition to Digital Television: FCC Mandates and Market Evolution" predicted that the number of U.S. households owning HD-capable hardware will rise from 8.7 million in 2003 to more than 14 million by the end of this year.

Strategy Analytics added that roughly one-half of those households will also receive HD programming from cable, satellite or terrestrial sources.

"The next 12 months will be a critical period, as consumer-electronics vendors launch a new generation of digital receivers incorporating government-mandated features such as ATSC [Advanced Television Systems Committee] tuners and CableCARD slots," said James Penhune, director of Strategy Analytics’ broadband-media and communications practice, in a prepared statement.

"At the same time, market factors are combining to promote demand for digital TV,” he added. “These include a growing base of households with HD-capable displays and the increasing importance of HD-programming services to cable and satellite operators competing for high-value subscribers."

However, Strategy Analytics still sees some roadblocks ahead.

“Even with this rapid growth, it remains highly unlikely that digital-TV hardware will reach the penetration levels needed to conclude the government's goal of a full transition to digital broadcasting within the next five years,” the researcher said in a prepared statement.

“As a result, legislators and the FCC must seriously consider further regulatory measures, such as the downconversion of digital signals or the subsidy of adaptors for millions of existing TVs,” Strategy Analytics added.

Related