Consumers use location-based services on mobile devices partly because of the convenience such services offer. In a March 2012 poll of U.S. mobile app users by ISACA, the company found that 58% of smart phone owners used location-based apps, compared with 15% who had not. The tradeoff to this convenience are the concerns that arise regarding security and privacy issues when using portable devices. More than half of the responders thought that there was a good balance between the benefits offered by location-based services and the risks in using them. However, 20% felt the risks outweighed any benefits, and it is to these users that brands must demonstrate that privacy concerns are being addressed, especially if they plan to ramp up mcommerce and geolocation efforts in the near future.
The upcoming blockbuster film “The Hobbit,” due to be released December 2012, will bring major changes to the movie theater business, according to IHS’s latest study, “Screen Digest Cinema Intelligence Service Report.” Since the film is being produced at a higher frame rate (48 per second, as compared to the standard 24 per second), cinemas will have to upgrade their projectors to play the film, unless they are already equipped with Series 2 or Sony projectors. “The Hobbit” is also filmed digitally, a format rapidly replacing 35mm film across the industry. As of 2011, more than 50% of movie screens globally were digital, an increase of 82%.
Usage-based insurance (UBI) continues to thrive in Europe, spearheaded by widespread adoption in the U.K. and Italy, while in the U.S., UBI lags behind its European counterparts, despite efforts from insurance firms such as Progressive.UBI continues to evolve, as well, changing from a pay-as-you-drive (PAYD) model to more of a pay-how-you-drive (PHYD) mechanism that includes input from driver behavior monitoring services built in to today’s Internet-connected automobile technologies. UBI is trying to overcome the traditional biases inherent in such proxies as age and gender by treating drivers as individuals and having them pay for risks they actually take, but UBI uptake may be slowed as insurance companies figure out how to collect and share data in an open, responsible manner.
The June 2012 edition of CrossTalk has been compiled, curated, and now, released out into the wild. This issue contains plenty of breaking industry news, relevant free and for pay market research, and a handy compendium of upcoming events. Stay up to date with all things telco and broadband by getting your June 2012 CrossTalk today.
For more, go to http://www.actiontec.com/newsletter/june12/
In the opinion of researchers at the Netherlands’ University of Twente, Wi-Fi is approaching its technical limits. With up to 80% drops in efficiency when operating in busy environments where many networks and wireless-enabled devices are operating, the technology, largely unchanged since the Wi-Fi standard was introduced in the 1980s, must modernize and consider the option of a new Wi-Fi standard. The University came to this conclusion through exploratory analysis by its CTIT research institute, on behalf of Radiocommunications Agency Netherlands.
For additional information, see http://phys.org/news/2012-06-wi-fi-limits-dutch.html
Infonetics Research recently released its latest ”Total Fixed and Mobile Subscribers Pivot” market size and forecast report, which tracks over 40 types of wireline broadband, wireline voice, mobile, wireless, mobile broadband, video, IMS, and WiMAX subscribers. Among the report’s highlights:
- Mobile subscribers are forecast to pass the 6 billion mark in 2012, and to approach 7 billion by 2016.
- In some countries (Finland, for example), the number of mobile subscribers already surpasses the total population.
- More than 200 million voice access lines are expected to be dropped over the next the 5 years as people continue to “cut the cord.”
- The number of LTE subscribers is forecast to approach 450 million by 2016
For more coverage, go to http://www.infonetics.com/pr/2012/Fixed-and-Mobile-Subscribers-Market-Highlights.asp
The FCC recently published a Wi-Fi Network Tip Sheet that provides users a series of best-use practices when it comes to securing their personal Wi-Fi networks. The Tip Sheet includes a short overview of Wi-Fi concepts, then discusses how to secure personal Wi-Fi networks, as well as how to stay secure when using a public Wi-Fi network (using a personal firewall, activating an encrypted VPN, etc.). The Tip Sheet can be found on the onguardonline.gov web site, which also provides information about protecting kids online and avoiding Internet scams.
For additional information, see http://onguardonline.gov/
Worldwide broadband subscriber numbers recently hit the 600 million milestone, according to figures published by the Broadband Forum and gathered by industry analysts Point Topic. These impressive numbers include the 100 million new lines added in the last 18 months, which add up to nearly 20% of the subscriber total. Overall, new global broadband connections reached over 16 million in Q1 2012, 2 million more than Q1 2011. Many of these new connections occurred in Asia, with China leading the way in both broadband and IPTV, and the region continued to dominate the rest of the world with over 250 million subscribers.
For additional information, go to http://www.broadband-forum.org/news/download/pressreleeases/2012/Communicasia_Presentation12.pdf
With “Older Adults and Internet Use,” Pew Internet takes an in-depth look at American adults 65 and older and their use of the Internet and email. Although these adults are the least likely group to use the Internet, Pew discovered that for the first time, at least half of seniors report going online. After several years of very little growth among this group, these gains are significant. As of February 2012, 34% of Internet users age 65 and older use social networking sites such as Facebook, and 18% do so on a typical day. By comparison, 86% of internet users age 65 and older used email, with 48% doing so on a typical day. As for gadget ownership, 69% of seniors report owning a mobile phone, a rise of 12% since mid-2010, while more than half of seniors 75 and older say they own one.
For additional coverage, go to http://pewresearch.org/pubs/2281/seniors-older-adults-online-internet-email-broadband-social-media-facebook-linked-in
Pew Internet released the results of a new survey recently. “Twitter Use 2012″ explores the current use of Twitter through data collected from telephone interviews from January 20 to February 19, 2012, among a sample of 2,253 adults, age 18 and older, and from March 15 to April 3, 2012, among a sample of 2,254 adults, age 18 and older. According to the survey, 15% of online adults use Twitter, and 8% do so on a typical day. The use of Twitter rose from 13% in May 2011 to 15% in February 2012, although the proportion of online adults who use Twitter on a typical day doubled in the same time frame. Increased smartphone use is thought to account for much of this growth, as smartphone users are particularly likely to use Twitter.
With subscription video on demand (SVOD) leading the charge, Netflix passed Apple in 2011 to become the largest U.S. online movie service in terms of revenue. As reported in “Screen Digest Broadband Media Market Insight,” a new study from IHS, Netflix’s share of U.S. online revenue rose to 44% last year, up from less than 1% in 2010, while Apple’s share shrunk from 61% to 32%, although the company did see strong revenue growth in this segment. Revenue from SVOD services, which give consumers access to movies for a recurring fee, reached $454 million in 2011, dwarfing the 2010 total of $4.3 million. This explosive growth makes SVOD the largest slice of the U.S. online business, a development directly related to Netflix’s decision to charge directly for online access.
ABI Research has released a new report. Titled “Home Automation Market Data, Global,” the study takes a look at the evolving market for home automation systems, including how the rise of managed subscriptions will impact existing home automation systems. According to ABI, new entrants in the home automation market are ramping up awareness and adoption of home automation and taking what had been a niche market for wealthy consumers and making it available to the general populace. Telcos, cable companies, and other players are now offering home automation services and transforming a formerly high-priced item into what they hope will become an essential monthly service.
The largest cable and telephone providers in the U.S. acquired 1.3 million new high-speed Internet subscribers in the first quarter of 2012. This group of companies–composed of seventeen of the leading domestic cable/telephone providers–now account for nearly 80 million subscribers (45.3 million for cable, 34.6 million for telephone), according to new findings uncovered by Leichtman Research. Other highlights:
- Total broadband additions in Q1 2012 surpassed those in Q1 2011, with cable seeing a dramatic increase (114% year-over year), while telcos dropped (76% year-over-year).
- The top cable companies added about 980,000 subscribers, representing 75% of the net broadband additions for the quarter compared to the top telephone companies.
- Comcast added 439,000 broadband subscribers in 1Q 2012–the most in any quarter since Q1 2008.
For more information, go to http://www.leichtmanresearch.com/press/053112release.html
Over 1.8 million home energy efficiency systems were installed across the world in 2011, reflecting the growing interest consumers have in using this technology to save energy and reduce costs. Consequently, “smart home” and “smart metering” are becoming the two hottest buzzwords in the Utilities sector. Consumers aren’t the only ones interested in energy monitoring and savings driven by M2M (machine-to-machine) technology: many municipalities and governments are spearheading new projects that will eventually lead to the replacement of standard meters with smart meters, allowing efficient remote consumption reading and billing. The U.K. government, to cite one example, is planning a smart meter rollout in 2014 that will deliver £7 billion in benefits while giving home users more control over their energy use.
For additional coverage, see http://www.m2mdaily.com/m2m-solutions/m2m-technologies-are-necessary-to-be-energy-efficient/
Digital TV Research predicts that 2013 will be a good year for pay-TV revenues in North America. However, according to a new report, 2013 will also be the year from which revenues will drop off almost $91 billion, to $88.2 billion, by 2017. Meanwhile, IPTV penetration is forecast to rise 73% between 2011 and 2017, reaching 15.8 million TV households. Digital TV Research goes on to say that pay-TV penetration is approaching the saturation point in Canada and the U.S., forcing pay TV operators to fight between themselves for new subscribers. The operators are coming at this from multiple angles as they push for full, 100% digital penetration by 2016 . Most analog cable subscribers will migrate to digital cable, but IPTV also stands to gain ground, especially considering the telcos’ recent aggressive pricing policies.
For more information, see http://www.fierceiptv.com/story/report-north-american-iptv-market-growing-cable-declining/2012-06-08
After comparing numbers from three years ago with what is reported today, Point Topic revealed which countries have overcome the broadband “crunch” – identifying those that have battled their way through to meet, or even exceed, expectations set in 2009. The two extremes on the scale are Russia and Malaysia. In Russia, it has been notoriously difficult to source accurate figures for broadband take-up. New sources of information released since 2009 have not only forced up forecasts but also the actual number of broadband subscribers. In contrast, Malaysia has languished in broadband adoption, despite evidence of high demand, due mainly to a lack of competition. Meanwhile, the U.S. and India saw slower than expected growth, with the U.S. coming in at 5% below expectations.
For more, go to http://point-topic.com/press.php
According to leading broadband analyst firm Point Topic, global IPTV subscriptions advanced toward 60 million at the end of 2011, with the last yearly quarter witnessing the biggest three-month increase to date. These figures were taken from Point Topic’s “Internet Video and Voice” service, which provides a comprehensive view of global Internet video and voice markets. IPTV as a service is crucial to operators, as it is the “stickiest” of residential services and a necessity for most ISPs, while also offering the best current opportunity of increasing revenue. Point Topic believes that as margins from bare-bones broadband get ever smaller, the future for operators lies in value-added services.
For additional coverage, go to http://point-topic.com/press.php
The U.S. Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce (USPAACC) Education Foundation officially unveiled its 2012 list of “Fast 50 Asian American Businesses” during its Excellence Awards Gala, held at the flagship CelebrAsian Business Opportunity Conference on June 5. The founders, CEOs, COOs, and presidents of dozens of businesses flew in from all over the country to attend the black-tie event. Actiontec Electronics was proud to be honored as part of the “Fast 50,” designating the company as one of the fifty fastest-growing Asian-American owned businesses. Actiontec is a certified Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) through California’s Utility Supplier Diversity Program, and has its own Supplier Diversity program that is actively updated and evaluated to provide opportunities to minority- and woman-owned businesses.
For more information, see http://www.actiontec.com/products/view_news.php?nid=287
Despite slipping numbers in the cable pay-TV subscriber market, total pay-TV revenue in North America is expected to grow almost 25%, from $99 billion in 2011 to $125 billion in 2017. This rise will be mainly due to current subscribers upgrading their existing services, according to Pyramid Research’s latest biannual media forecast report. The recently released study tracks demand patterns for free and pay-TV services over terrestrial, satellite, and mobile platforms worldwide, while providing relevant data concerning pay-TV and mobile TV dynamics for over 52 countries, including the U.S. and Canada.
For additional coverage, see http://www.pyramidresearch.com/pr_prlist/north-america-media-forecast.htm
Pyramid Research released a new report recently, titled “Canada: 2013 Spectrum Auction Spurs LTE Network Investment.” The study features an exacting overview of Canada’s telecommunications, media, and technology markets. It also includes a detailed competitive analysis of both the fixed and mobile sectors. Pyramid expects that more than 25 million Canadians will be able to access LTE by the end of 2012. This lucrative customer base, along with the 700 MHz spectrum auction due to be held in Canada in early 2013, will likely spur investment in Canadian LTE networks, to the tune of $13.6 billion in mobile data sales by 2017.
Rising from a base of 25% of the TV sets shipped globally in 2011, IMS Research forecasts that Internet-connected TVs will compose nearly 70% of all TV sales by 2016, resulting in more than $117 billion in revenues. According to the recently released report, “Connected TV Sets – World – 2012,” Internet connectivity, once a standard only on high-end TVs, is fast being featured on mid-level models, which will only spur the growth of Internet-connected televisions. The report goes on to state that proprietary operating systems will remain the main type used by manufacturers in the next five years, although Android OS will start gaining presence and is expected to reach a significant share of the market by 2014.
IMS Research projects that medical devices used by consumers to self-monitor health will provide the largest opportunity for wireless technologies such as Bluetooth. The firm forecasts that more than 50 million wireless health monitoring devices will ship during the next five years. IMS Research’s latest report, “Wireless Opportunities in Health and Wellness Monitoring – 2012 Edition,” also predicts that medical devices bought by consumers will account for more than 80% of sales of all wireless-enabled medical devices by 2016. One of the main drivers of these increases will be the ability to monitor one’s health using a separate device, such as a smartphone, as well as users’ continuing familiarity with these devices and the applications they run.
Is Wi-Fi and cellular network integration on the horizon? Infonetics thinks so. In its latest report, “Carrier Wi-Fi Offload and Hotspot Strategies: Global Service Provider Survey,” the research firm believes that mobile operators are fully supportive of methods to use Wi-Fi as a way to offload cellular network use, and that in the near future, closer integration between the two protocols will result in an offloading experience that is intelligent, automated, and seamless. Other highlights:
- Two-thirds of the service providers interviewed have already deployed 20,000 to over 150,000 Wi-Fi access points in public spaces.
- Street coverage is seen as one of the areas of concern for Wi-Fi coverage; by 2013, the percentage of service providers planning to deploy Wi-Fi for street coverage will rise to 79%.
- Nearly all carriers surveyed plan to increase the number of access points deployed by 2013, so Infonetics expects significant carrier deployment over the coming year.
Wi-Fi hotspots continue to be a hot product, Infonetics Research found in their latest market size, market share, and forecast report, “Carrier WiFi Equipment.” Demand from mobile operators supplementing their existing 3/4G networks with Wi-Fi hotspot services is driving this market to new heights, while fixed-line operators and ISPs continue to install new Wi-Fi equipment to augment existing Wi-Fi hotspots, and cable and DSL companies use Wi-Fi to enhance their broadband services. Add to this the upgrades needed to bring existing access points up-to-date with the forthcoming 802.11ac protocol, and Infonetics sees a bright future ahead for Wi-Fi equipment. Other report highlights:
- Global revenue for carrier Wi-Fi equipment grew 35% in 2011 from 2010.
- Mobile Wi-Fi access points are expected to experience an 86% annual growth rate through 2016.
- Infonetics forecasts the global carrier Wi-Fi equipment market to grow by high double-digit percentage points annually at least through 2016
LTE is set for dynamic growth this year. Connection volumes are expected to rise by 900%, to 90 million, by the end of 2012. Meanwhile, LTE smartphones, outgrowing their early core markets in the U.S., Japan, and South Korea, are also forecast to see a dramatic rise, reaching more than a billion connections by 2017. Strategy Analytics Wireless Operator Strategies service, in its latest release, “Worldwide Cellular User Forecasts: 2012-2017,” predicts that LTE, which enjoys overwhelming support from global operators as their 4G upgrade path, will account for 15 percent of all mobile connections in 2017, an upward path that outpaces GSM (which took 12 years to reach one billion connections) and WCDMA (projected to take 11 years to reach the billion mark).
For additional coverage, go to http://www.strategyanalytics.com/default.aspx?mod=pressreleaseviewer&a0=5225
With the recent release of “US & Western Europe Connected TV Owner Survey,” Strategy Analytics Digital Home Observatory reveals that owners of smart TVs in the U.S. are more than three times as likely to regularly make use of the Internet capabilities of their TVs than consumers in Europe. The hard numbers: more than 33% of American smart TV owners now connect their TV sets to the Internet at least once a week, compared to only 9% in Europe. Strategy Analytics believes one of the driving forces behind the domestic surge of connecting smart TVs is the availability of strong online video services such as Netflix. On the other hand, the study also found that 33% of smart TV owners in Europe and 22% in the U.S. had never set up their smart TV to connect to the Internet, even though a large number of buyers in both locations admit they had purchased the TV because of its Internet connectivity.
For more information, see http://www.strategyanalytics.com/default.aspx?mod=pressreleaseviewer&a0=5222
The Diffusion Group recently released a new market debrief, “Integrating Security for N-Screen Delivery.” In it, the company discusses the continuing need for multi-screen media access and content security. Content providers insist upon lockdown protection for their media output, no matter what device is used for delivery. Most of this security has, up to now, been of the screen and network variety, which forces security firms to have different solutions in place for every device and network type supported. TDG uses this latest report to explore whether a security provider can deploy a single kind of security across N-screens, what difficulties arise from the use of this strategy, and some examples of a converged, single solution for multi-screen TV deployment.
For additional information, see http://tdgresearch.com/media/p/2577.aspx
Infonetics Research recently released excerpts from its new “Gateway Deployment Strategies: Global Service Provider” survey. The report looks into service providers’ strategies for deploying and pricing residential gateways, the applications driving their deployments, and their top picks for residential gateway vendors, services, technologies, and features. Among the highlights of the survey:
- The percentage of operators offering IPTV services using a residential gateway will increase from its present 88% to 100% by 2013.
- The number of operators offering WiFi hotspot access using a residential gateway will grow to 82% by 2013.
- Service providers remain reluctant to offer integrated ONTs and residential gateways.
- Operators consider the top 3 residential gateway vendors to be Huawei, Pace, and ZTE.