Almost Online Video 1 Bln Viewers by 2013?

Market analysis firm ABI Research has released a new study, “Broadband Video and Internet TV,” that forecasts the number of people watching online video will jump from about 563 billion today (at the end of 2008) to some 941 million by the year 2013. And more and more of those people will be watching premium video content like movies, dramas, comedies, and sports in their living rooms, as opposed to the often-amateurish user-generated video now available from sites like YouTube on a PC.

“All stakeholders in the online video ecosystem are eyeing the living room,” said ABI research director Michael Wolf, in a statement. “With the continued adoption of network-connected video game consoles, the porting of popular online video services such as Hulu and Netflix onto third party consumer electronics devices, and network operators’ growing interest in over-the-top video, we see this market for TV-displayed online video continuing to grow.”

Although ABI forecasts the current economic downturn will stifle some market grwoth, particularly in online video advertising, ABI Research still anticipates the market will grow in the next few years as a “counter-cyclical” form of low-cost entertainment.

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