Set-top shipments to hit record highs (Original)

Set-top box shipments will set record highs in 2013 and the next two years, climbing 8% this year alone, according to new research by IHS.

The Set-Top Box Market Monitor report claims that shipments of set-tops for cable, satellite, terrestrial and IPTV digital TV services are set to reach 269 million units this year, up from 250 million in 2012.

This year is also tipped to be “the most valuable year in the history of the market” with STB revenue tipped to grow to US$22.2 billion (€17 billion).

In 2014, shipments are will grow by another 6% to 286 million and will increase by a further 1% in 2015 to 290 million – a market peak for “the foreseeable future” – according to IHS.

After this, shipments are expected to start to decline, decreasing by 5% in 2016 and by another 2% in 2017.

Daniel Simmons, senior principal analyst for TV technology at IHS, said that operators’ growing emphasis on supporting multiscreen devices means that the STB is under threat as the dominant pay TV video consumption device.

“However, operators are continuing to deploy STBs in order to manage the compatibility between their delivery networks and the consumer electronics devices that consumers are increasingly using to view content now,” he said.…

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Samsung acquires Boxee for $30M, smarter TVs coming? (Original)

Update: 1:58PM: Looks like this has been confirmed, though there has been no official word from Boxee yet. According to multiple reports, Samsung has acquired streaming video company Boxee for $30 million. Sources……

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Set-top box is not dead, says Arris (Original)

ArrisThe set-top box “isn’t dead” but will continue to evolve into a home networking environment, according to Steve McCaffrey, Arris’ senior vice-president of EMEA.

Speaking at the Arris-Motorola’s Video Leadership Forum event in Berlin, McCaffrey said that though Motorola Home’s vision has never changed, though it previously “got a little bit confused” as its customers “didn’t know whether we were competitors or vendors in many ways.”

Outlining Motorola Home and Arris’ aims post-Arris takeover, McCaffrey, who was previously vice-president at Motorola, said: “Our vision, particularly with the set top is there needs to be an aggregation point within the home. Today the aggregation point, supported by a video service provider happens to be a set-top box, but I think in time to come it will develop into some form of gateway and then into some form of home control point. The set-top box isn’t dead, it’s actually evolving to continue to be that control point within the home, but very much expanding into a home networking type environment. That measurement is very much smartened up now inside our new Arris organisation.”

He added that under Arris, the Motorola Home brand would be phased out in the next 12 months.

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Roku Wants To Be Part Of Your Next Smart TV, Raises $60 Million To Do It (Original)


These days, just about any cheapo Blu-ray player or game console can stream video from Netflix or Hulu, so what’s a company that makes a slew of low-cost video streaming boxes to do to stand out from the pack? Well, if you’re Roku, the answer is you raise a ton of money and set your sights on software too.

AllThingsD reports that Roku has just raised another $60 million in funding in a round led by Fidelity, and ATD’s Peter Kafka goes on to note that Roku is looking to use that infusion of capital to bolster its software partnerships with television manufacturers.

In addition to pushing out cutesy streaming video boxes, Roku wants its software to be baked directly into a new generation of smart televisions — an especially savvy move given just how ferociously players like Microsoft are attempting to take over people’s living rooms. After all, the promise of streaming content from services like Netflix, Hulu, and Crackle is one that’s been fulfilled nearly every major game console, not to mention by number of Roku’s rivals. A cheap streamer box like the ones Roku makes only hold so much appeal when compared to a truly multi-purpose device like the Xbox 360 (to say nothing of the seemingly media-centric Xbox One) or a hot-seller like the Apple TV (which has outsold Roku’s boxes by more than 2 to 1), so Roku’s attempt to move up the stack directly into televisions could give the company a leg-up as the amount of hardware competition continues to grow.…

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Set-top box under threat from connected TVs, operator apps (Original)

Alex Green

Alex Green

Web-delivered content via apps and smart TVs will eventually result in the demise of the set-top box, though rights issues present the main challenge to this shift, according to BT Retail’s director of TV Alex Green. 

Speaking at the Connected TV World Summit in London on a panel discussion about ‘the virtual pay TV set-top box’ Green said that technology was not the main concern when it comes to a shift  towards app-based cloud access, but that removing the networked PVR could present some major challenges.

“I don’t think that there’s any question in the end the set top box will go away – I don’t think anyone doubts that. But some of the main challenges I see not so much from a technology point of view but from a rights perspective. The reality is that a networked PVR has one way of coping with this,” said Green.

“The other way of approaching this  is you say everything should be like Spotify for TV – a pure cloud library. You don’t even need to remember to record something, it’s all there. But again the reality is that those permanent, universal rights, simply don’t exist online in that comprehensive way.…

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Get launches next-generation TV box (Original)

Norwegian cable operator Get is launching a new next-generation DVR set-top along with a new television and broadband bundled product.

The Get Box II is equipped with multiple TV tuners and double the storage of the previous generation of boxes. The combined set-top and gateway box includes a built-in modem and supports telephony and two wireless home networks. Get plans to provide TV signals wireless around the home to Get Micro boxes, tablets and smartphones.

Get CEO Gunnar Evensen said the operator was testing solutions for new services, including search and recommendation across platforms and access to content on the TV, tablets and smartphones.

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How set-top boxes like Roku and Apple TV have changed TV forever (Original)

Not long ago, analysts were predicting OTT set-top boxes would be a flash in the pan, but now they've changed their tune. Media streamers like Roku and Apple TV are seeing a lot of action and have, in fact, changed the way we watch TV for good.…

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Microsoft takes on living room with new Xbox (Original)

Microsoft has launched its next generation of Xbox games console, which will allow users to navigate and watch live TV from their cable, telco or satellite provider direct from the device.

The Xbox One, unveiled at a press event yesterday at Microsoft’s Redmond Washington headquarters, was billed as “the ultimate all-in-one home entertainment system,” acting as a hub for games, TV, movies, music, sports and Skype.

The new linear TV feature, which builds on the multimedia apps available on the current generation of Xbox 360, will enable live TV delivery on the console – either over the air, over the internet, or by connecting the device to another set-top box via HDMI.

Though Microsoft did not break down the specifics, it said: “The delivery of TV is complex and we are working through the many technologies and policies around the world to make live TV available where Xbox One is available,”

The Xbox One will also feature a home screen with tailored dashboard, designed to offer games, TV and entertainment. Skype for Xbox One will let users chat via their TV in HD, while the OneGuide will let users search for entertainment, with trending tools to also show what is popular with a users’ friends.…

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Microsoft rumored to be making new streaming set top box (Original)

Always seemingly one step behind, the latest rumor has Microsoft looking to come to market with a new streaming set top box to compete with the likes of Apple TV, Roku and Boxee. It may also include Kinect and possibly something more with smart TVs.…

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Amazon’s Prime Instant Video set-top box sounds like a winner (Original)

Amazon video
With so many companies failing to deliver a great television companion box, it looks like Amazon plans to toss their hat in the ring and see how they do. Let’s face it, the……

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