Google Chromecast to power STB and dongle market growth in 2013

Google Chromecast device is set to power the growth of the smart set-top box and dongle market in 2013.

ABI Research says the smart set-top box and dongle market will cross 18 million units in 2013.

Asia-Pacific and Latin America will drive this growth. Overall the market is expected to grow with a 10.8 percent CAGR (2013 to 2018).

Despite competition from connected CE devices, the smart set-top box (STB) and dongle market offers a compelling user experience often at significantly lower price points. ( Cisco extends STB revenue market share lead in Q1 )

“Google’s Chromecast device in particular sets a new low price bar for the connected CE market and as more applications are added to its library its value to price ratio will continue to grow,” said ABI Research Senior analyst Michael Inouye.

Google Chromecast drives STB market

The price of these devices will also allow lower tier TV manufacturers to separate the connected TV component, keeping prices lower and enabling customers the option to upgrade the connected platform as desired without replacing the TV or purchasing costly and proprietary upgrade modules, ABI Research said.

If Sony secures the rights to distribute live cable channels from Viacom, partnerships such as this allude to a content future quite different from the one many are accustomed to today.

Content holders are forging more direct relationships to viewers and this would be a natural step forward, but the Pay TV operators are likewise evolving and adapting to this changing market environment.

The amalgamation of Pay TV and OTT will become increasingly important, suggesting Google TV’s vision might have come too early but might grow into this role as a bridge or new entrants like Microsoft’s Xbox One might fully realize this unified vision.

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