Set-top shipments growing but value continues to slide

Pace DPX5000 set-top box (THUMB)Set-top shipments for last year are expected to exceed 250 million, buoyed by demand in emerging market such as China and India, but the value of shipments will continue to decline, according a report by SNL Kagan.

Worldwide box shipments are on track to reach 253.1 million in 2015, up marginally from 248.6 million in 2014, as the global multichannel market swelled to an estimated 959 million subscribers, according to SNL Kagan estimates for global volumes.

Cable shipments should reach 75 million units, on a par with 2014, with cable operators in mature markets reaching saturation or experiencing competition from other platforms. SNL Kagan expects cable box shipments to be flat in the near term.

The market for IP set-tops is also projected to remain relatively flat over the next few years, as growing demand for IP boxes in Europe and Asia is offset by declining demand in North America.

Satellite box shipments are the largest segment globally, on track to account for 47% of the total for the year.

DVR shipments declined in 2015 thanks to some service providers moving to cut costs and others looking to introduce cloud-based DVR services.

HD boxes will account for about 76% of the total shipments for the year, meaning over 60 million standard-definition set-tops were also shipped.

SNL Kagan believes that while volumes will increase, revenues will continue to decline. Set-top revenues are expected to fall from US$17.5 billion in 2015 to US$14.55 billion by 2019.