By Keri Algar
SYDNEY, NSW: The reinstatement of the television as the hub of the living room combined with changing viewing habits, most notably surrounding downloaded content is increasing the popularity of IPTV, according to leading suppliers.
Internet TV viewing almost doubled in the six months to June 2010, from 2.6 per cent to 4.7 per cent according to the Canon Consumer Digital Lifestyle Index, suggesting that the fledgling technology is growing strong as more content becomes available. As is the quibble with 3D TV, content is key.
Getting in early was Sony, who with search engine giant Google launched their integrated Google TV range last week in the United States, a version of which is expected to arrive in Australia next year, though models and pricing are yet to be confirmed.
Meanwhile, Panasonic announced its partnership with Plus7 by Yahoo!7, which will be available through Viera Cast “soon”. Matt Pearce, group marketing manager Viera, Panasonic Australia, told Current.com.au that interest in connected TV will continue to gain momentum as viewing habits shift.
“The TV has fast become the entertainment hub in the lounge-room and consumers are now not only looking for outstanding picture quality, but greater choice in what they watch. IPTV is bringing viewers more flexibility in how they view and interact in their lounge-room,” said Pearce.
“IPTV technology is a market trend to watch, with increasing interest from consumers, and we expect it to be a key growth area in 2011.”
Evan Manolis, group manager for audio visual at Samsung Electronics Australia said consumers drawn in-store by 3D offerings are equally sold on connected TVs.
“On-demand IPTV content is certainly appealing to our customers and we are working with multiple content partners, including Telstra and CASPA, to deliver a broad range of video on-demand services, from movies and TV shows to sports and entertainment,” Manolis said.
“We have already had very positive feedback on our VOD services such as BigPond Sport Game Analyser, which allows viewers to relive every match from last year’s NRL Telstra Premiership finals series, State of Origin, All Stars match, plus all 2010 season matches.
“The unique suite of services brought into the living room through this connectivity includes not only IPTV, but also Samsung AllShare, a TV apps store and wireless connection to smart devices.”