According to a study from IHS Markit, Apple will be a distinct disadvantage in terms of attracting subscribers with only 57% of US households capable of receiving the service. This accounts for households that will access the service iPhones, iPads, MacBooks, Apple TVs and Samsung Smart TVs – the only platforms where the service will be available.
By contrast, Netflix reaches 95% of US households while Disney+ will reach 92% of households. Though the report does point out that the growth of Disney+ will be dependent on its availability on Android mobile devices and smart TV partnerships.
Fateha Begum, principal research analyst at IHS Markit, said: “With its limited device distribution, Apple TV+ will be accessible to just over half the online population in the U.S., thus hindering subscriber growth. Although Apple is the largest smartphone brand in the US market and plans to offer free access with hardware purchases, the company would need to widen its device distribution to compete with OTT players that are now available nearly universally.”
The report goes on to suggest that Apple should make its streamer available on third-party devices, such as digital media adapters, along with streaming dongles from Roku and Amazon, and smart TVs from other vendors.
Begum said: “By opening up to other platforms, Apple TV+ will see its addressable base increase by 24 percent to 87 million U.S. households. This will improve Apple’s position, but the company will still be at a disadvantage compared to competitors who can address the entire US market of 124 million online households.”
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