The level of pay TV piracy in Latin America means that illicit consumption of content is effectively the ‘number three player’ in the market behind América Movil and DirecTV, according to research by Dataxis.
However, Dataxis said that digitization of cable networks would mean that the level of piracy will drop significantly this year, and will remain lower over the next five years, with pirated services expected to reach 11.3 million consumers by 2022.
While pirating of analogue cable has been the “main door of entry for piracy” historically, said the research group, illegal reception of satellite transmissions is expected to take the lead from 2020.
Dataxis’s most recent quarterly update of pay TV numbers indicated that the number of legal pay TV subscribers in the Latin America and Caribbean region reached 72.6 million at the end of March. The figure indicates growth of only 0.2% quarter-on-quarter – the fourth consecutive quarter in which growth rates stood at less than 1%.
According to Dataxis, DTH satellite accounted for 50.4% of subscribers at the end of the first quarter, with cable accounting for 45.9% and IPTV accounting for 2.5%. About 87.1% of pay TV homes were digital as of that date.