The global smart TV market is predicted to grow rapidly over the coming years. According to analysis, it was valued at $426.31 million in 2021 and is expected to reach $2.36 billion by 2030, representing an impressive CAGR of 20.97%. In fact, smart TV has been the fastest-growing device segment in every region of the world over recent years (Conviva’s State of Streaming) so it is not surprising that this is where technology firms are now focusing their attention.
In this blog, we’ll look at how the smart TV market has evolved, discuss current smart TV trends, and consider what this means for OTT players as they decide which platforms to launch or extend their service on.
The concept of smart TVs is nothing new, dating back to the late 1990s when TV manufacturers first began to integrate computer technology with their hardware. Streaming took off around the mid 2000s when TV content became available via the Internet (albeit in a limited way at first). Unsurprisingly, early smart TV models were bulky and expensive, and the technology was not yet advanced enough to provide a seamless user experience. However, as technology improved, and the Internet became more widely available, smart TVs began to gain traction. By the mid-2010s, most television manufacturers were offering smart TV models, and the technology started to become more affordable for consumers. Connected TV devices, such as Amazon Fire TV, Roku, and games consoles such as XBOX and PlayStation, also became available and enabled users to plug into their existing TVs to enable content streaming. Fast forward to 2023, and smart TVs have now become the center of home entertainment, often replacing these secondary devices connected to TVs that were previously used by a large group of consumers.
Today the market is dominated by big brands such as Samsung, LG, Vizio, TCL, Panasonic, and Sony, and competition is fierce. Smart TVs run a range of operating systems including Android TV, Roku, Tizen, webOS, SmartCast and Fire TV. This means that developing apps for LG smart TVs will be different to OTT distribution on for example Samsung; both of which run their own operating systems, webOS and Tizen respectively. In recent years, we have started seeing more companies look for ways to increase their market share by taking ownership of both hardware and software. Roku is one example of this, having just announced that it is launching its own line of smart TVs, in a move to increase its consumer base and compete with TV manufacturers.
There are several reasons why smart TVs have become so popular in recent years. From a consumer perspective, they allow access to a wide range of content, including streaming services, live television and even online gaming. This provides users with a more diverse and convenient viewing experience, with all their favorite services and content available from one place. Another reason behind the popularity of smart TVs is how easy they are to use. With intuitive interfaces and voice-controlled remote controls, users can quickly and easily access the content they want. Lastly, as the technology has become more affordable, smart TVs have of course become more accessible to a wider range of consumers.
From an industry perspective, smart TVs have become increasingly important for a number of reasons. Firstly, they are fast becoming the favored device for streaming content so the potential for market growth is huge. Simply put, everyone wants a piece of the pie. In addition, operating systems can collect huge volumes of valuable user data. This turns the smart TV into a treasure trove of advertising and measurement data, which of course is great for tracking usage, targeting content, and increasing ad-based revenue. OTT aggregation is also easily achieved at the OS level so the TV companies have a lot of power and control over which services and content are made available. Another reason why smart TVs are becoming more important, is that TVs are replaced on average every 8 – 10 years; much less frequently than a mobile or connected TV device. Although it is likely that the lifespan of an LED or OLED TV is a bit less than this, most consumers will still keep their smart TV a lot longer than most other devices. This is a big reason why technology companies are working so hard to ensure that consumers choose their TV over other brands.
Looking to the future, it is clear that smart TVs will play an increasingly important role in the media industry, as well as in consumers’ lives. As technology continues to advance, we can expect to see even more sophisticated and user-friendly smart TVs, with larger and clearer displays, improved sound quality, and more advanced features. To learn more about smart TV trends and the most cutting-edge models on the market right now, read our CES 2023 OEM CTVs Roundup blog where we are discussing this in more detail. Increased competition between technology companies will no doubt make smart TVs more affordable and this is one of the factors that has led to some analysts predicting that all TVs will be smart TVs in as little as 10 years.
With so many smart TVs out there all running different operating systems, it can be difficult to decide which platform to launch or extend your OTT service on. Determining which platforms are most suited to a service will depend on a number of things including who the target audience is, what region they are in, and what sort of content will be available on the service. When creating OTT service and evaluating which platform is right for your offering, it’s critical to understand any technical requirements that the platform may have. This can impact service design and development in a big way, and needs to be considered from early on in the process.
Whether you want to develop apps for Samsung smart TVs, deliver OTT content to LG smart TV, or tap into other leading brands or operating systems, Accedo can help accelerate the launch of your OTT apps, and guarantee a unified UX across devices.