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SES welcomes “Golden Age” of video

Satellite operator SES used a press event at IBC to stress its view that the world’s video demand is thriving. “We are entering the Golden Age of video,” said Deepak Mathur, SES SVP/AsiaPac and ME. Mathur said that content consumption is exploding, with an increasing appetite for – at least – HD, and that there was plenty of untapped potential in digital markets as they converted from analogue TV.

Mathur quoted a recent study by Ampere Analysis which forecast a $90 billion growth in incremental video revenues over the next five years with two-thirds of this growth coming from linear TV. He said that the number of TV channels now available was about 42,000. This would grow to about 50,000 globally by 2024.

“While video was 50 per cent of internet traffic two years ago, it will grow to some 81 per cent by 2021. And while typical video consumption of those adults over 35 years of age – overall – was about 28 hours per week, millennials were consuming much more, at about 34 hours per week, with 46 per cent of their consumption via VoD.”

Today’s linear TV, by traditional free-to-air and pay-TV, accounts for 95 per cent of all video revenues, the growth will come from OTT. “But linear content is the cash cow. Monetising content across the entire value chain is key. OTT only will not be enough.”

Mathur argued that VoD via OTT content is augmenting pay-TV, not replacing it.

He also said that Ampere Analysis was right with its forecasts that there will be a four-fold growth in the number of HD channels available. “In 2013 there were about 10,000 HDTV channels on air, and this is expected to more or less double again by 2025. Worldwide, especially in developing TV markets, 360 million households don’t yet own a TV!”

There’s another 300 million analogue homes still awaiting digital switchover. That’s 660 million who either have no access to TV at all, or only limited choices.”