The new forecast claims that the 4K STB market will grow from less than 2 million units in 2015 to more than 7 million in 2016 and will then grow by 46% annually through 2021.
At the same time, ABI predicts that the overall set-top box market will drop by about 9% in 2016 to less than US$16 billion in revenue, with both pay TV and free-to-air boxes losing value.
“Digital transitions are taking longer than initially planned and the market is experiencing significant downward pressure on set-top box pricing,” said ABI Research managing director and vice-president, Sam Rosen.
“Hardware revenues will fall, but value through software and services remains an opportunity. Providers should be looking to take on logistics and lifecycle challenges, in addition to testing and integration, to help the overall market flourish as well as focusing on 4K and HDR colour set-top boxes will in the years ahead.”
Regionally, China remains the largest set-top box market by units, having overtaken the US in 2010. However, India will continue to grow its set-top box shipments and is likely surpass China as shipment leader in 2018 or 2019, according to the research.