The global pay-TV market (cable, satellite, and telco IPTV) grew 9.4% in 2012’s first half (1H 2012) year-over-year (YoY) depite persisting economic weakness in the world’s two largest geographic markets, according to the latest data from Infonetics Research. Telco IPTV and satellite broadcasters are adding subscribers at the expense of cable TV service providers, according to Infonetics’ November 2012, “Pay TV Services and Subscribers” report.

Highlights of Infonetics’ latest report include:

  • The global pay-TV market (cable, satellite, and telco IPTV) totaled $137 billion in the first half of 2012 (1H12), a 9.4% increase over the same time last year
  • By 2016, Infonetics expects satellite TV revenue to overtake cable TV revenue for the first time
  • Global pay-TV service revenue is forecast by Infonetics to grow at a 7% CAGR from 2011 to 2016, spurred by emerging markets Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Russia, India, and China
  • Latin America, the smallest but fastest-growing pay-TV market, is on track to jump 23% this year to top $23 billion
  • The number of global pay-TV subscribers will reach 719 million in 2012, up 6% from 2011
  • While cable subscribers continue to make up the lion’s share (60% in 1H12) of pay-TV subscribers, growth is strongest in the telco IPTV segment, up 19% in 1H12 over 2H11
  • Verizon and AT&T are neck-and-neck for revenue share in the fast-growing telco IPTV market, followed by France Télécom and Deutsche Telekom in Europe and NTT and CTC in Asia

“Ongoing challenging economic conditions in the key revenue-generating markets of North America and Western Europe have resulted in slowing subscriber and revenue growth in the cable TV market,” commented Jeff Heynen, directing analyst for broadband access and pay TV at Infonetics Research.

“Subscribers are far less loyal than they used to be. The cable TV industry is characterized more by churn than cord cutting, as subscribers take advantage of introductory pricing on satellite and IPTV subscriptions that’s 30-50% below their cable bills. DirecTV, Verizon, AT&T, and Virgin Media have all set their sights on existing cable subscribers, and they’re seeing their subscriber bases increase as cable TV subscriptions shrink.”