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PWC: 8.1 million petabytes of data will be consumed in 2026

In its Global Entertainment and Media Outlook 2022-2026, PwC predicts mobile data consumption will rise to 3.8 million PB a year

As part of its Global Entertainment and Media Outlook 2022-2026, PwC predicts the growth of content will push global data consumption to 8.1 million petabytes by 2026.

That’s compared to 2.6 million petabytes in 2021.

According to PwC, gaming will be a major driver of the rise, with a 29.6 per cent CAGR expected. Mobile handsets will be the fastest-growing device category between 2021 and 2026, increasing at a 28.8 per cent CAGR and expected to push mobile data consumption up from 1.1 million PB to 3.8 million PB.

Meanwhile, OTT video is predicted to slow down somewhat growing at 7.6 per cent CAGR up until 2026, pushing revenues to $114.1 billion.

PwC expects traditional TV will continue to decline, with global revenues projected to shrink at a -0.8 per cent CAGR from $231 billion in 2021 to $222.1 billion in 2026.

The company also considered possibilities around the metaverse, starting with the virtual reality market. “It is currently one of the smaller segments tracked,” said PwC, “but the 36 per cent rise in global spending over the past year is a hint of its long-term potential”. The global installed base of stand-alone and tethered VR headsets is projected to grow from 21.6 million in 2021 to 65.9 million in 2026.

“With the impressive growth and potential of the E&M industry, comes tremendous volatility and what we describe as fault lines and fractures opening up between companies, within sectors and across geographies and generations,” said Werner Ballhaus, global entertainment and media industry leader, PwC Germany.

“For businesses, intense competition and continual disruption will remain the order of the day.  Our data shows the mix of revenues and spending is changing rapidly. As fault lines proliferate and widen, every business in E&M stands to be disrupted. The challenge and goal must be to understand your consumer and end up on the right side of disruption.”