Report: HDTV Over Satellite to Grow

Northern Sky Research (NSR) today released its newest market survey and forecast report: “High Definition Television (HDTV) over Satellite: A Regional Assessment of Demand for Satellite-Delivered HD Channels.” The report provides a unique insight into the emergence of HD and the implications for satellite operators. The report analyzes key market and technological trends and translates these trends into detailed forecasts for both HD channel growth and capacity demand growth over the next 5 years. By examining five global regions, the current state of the HD industry in various regions is provided, and regional growth forecasts are made by taking into account the variables unique to each local region.

The report concludes that in almost all global regions, HD is expected to make a near term appearance and begin to have an impact on overall satellite capacity demand as a result. North America clearly leads the way with a number of HD channels currently made available by all major broadcasters, as well as the two DTH players. And despite the recent hiccups experienced through the demise of VOOM, the North American HD industry is unquestionably here to stay.

From a global total of US$47.6M in revenues directly attributed to commercial satellite capacity leased purely for HD broadcasting in 2004, to a massive US$323.8M in revenues by 2010, the report forecasts significant growth in satellite lease revenues. This growth may be seen as welcome news for satellite operators given the recent stalemate in lease capacity prices due to excess capacity. In fact, the timing of HD could not be better: with increasing pressures from governments to migrate analog channels to less bandwidth intensive digital starting from 2005/6 onwards, operators have been looking at HD to soak up excess capacity.

“From a regional perspective, it is clear that North America and Japan have led the way in ensuring HD has finally emerged from being a niche service to a more widely accepted standard and an eventual replacement for standard definition digital television,” states Christopher Baugh, President of Northern Sky Research (NSR). “Europe is not far behind with its first HD channel started in 2004 and all the major national broadcasters announcing plans to launch HD channels. In fact, the key market and technology variables for Europe are only now just beginning to align, paving the way for sustained evolution of the HD industry, similar to what North America has experienced over the past few years,” states Baugh.

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