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 Thursday, September 07, 2006

In a recent press release, Gartner, Inc. says that the number of households around the world subscribing to Internet Protocol television (IPTV) services offered by telecom carriers will reach 48.8 million in 2010. Buoyed by new service launches, IPTV subscribers will more than double in 2007 from an expected 6.4 million in 2006 to 13.3 million according to Gartner.

Despite the eight-fold increase in users between 2006 and 2010, Gartner says that carriers will struggle to turn IPTV into a mainstream Pay TV distribution platform on par with established cable or satellite services. "The difficulty in carving out a distinctive proposition that will clearly differentiate early IPTV services from other established TV options will lead many service providers around the world to drive adoption by competing on price in the next few years", said Elroy Jopling, research director at Gartner. "As a result, the global picture for IPTV revenue is much less impressive than for subscriber numbers."

"Global IPTV revenue during the period will grow from $872 million in 2006 to a still relatively modest $13.2 billion by 2010. IPTV will not be a panacea to replace diminishing voice revenue for carriers, but in the medium term it can be a powerful tool for carriers in helping retain customers on their existing voice and broadband services."

Gartner defines IPTV as the delivery of video programming (either broadcast or on-demand) over a carrierís managed broadband network to a customerís TV set. It does not include streaming media over the Internet to a PC.

See the full press release on the Garner website.