Report: More TVs connected to Internet

Wed, 02/24/2010 - 7:10am
Brian Santo

More than one-quarter of all TVs purchased by American consumers in January were linked to the Internet, affirming consumer desire to distribute their media across multiple devices in the home.

According to a survey conducted by iSuppli Corp., 27.5 percent of U.S. consumers who bought a TV in January indicated their sets were connected to the Internet, either through the internal capabilities of their TVs or via external devices, such as digital video boxes or game consoles. This is up from 24.3 percent in December 2009.

“From video-sharing sites like YouTube, to online services like Hulu, consumers increasingly are turning to the Internet for video entertainment,” said Tina Tseng, analyst of television systems for iSuppli. “And these consumers want to view Internet content on their primary displays in their homes – their televisions – rather than being relegated the small screens of their desktop and notebook PCs. With the increasing pervasiveness of large-size, flat-panel digital televisions and the rising availability of Internet-enabled TVs (IETVs), more consumers are linking their sets to the Web.”

iSuppli’s survey revealed that 41.9 percent of Internet-connected televisions in the United States in January were IETVs. The next most popular means of connection, at 20.3 percent, was through video game consoles. This was followed by Blu-ray players at 13.2 percent and digital video boxes and other means of connection – such as PCs – which were tied at 12.3 percent each.

IETVs’ share of Internet-connected television in January rose by 14.2 percentage points from 27.7 percent in December.

How is your new TV connected to the Internet?


December 2009

January 2010

It is an Internet-enabled TV



Through a digital video box (i.e., Roku, Vudu)



Through a game console



Through an Internet-enabled Blu-ray player



Other (Internet module, PC, etc.)



Source: iSuppli Corp.

iSuppli defines an IETV as a set that has the capability to connect to the Internet, either with a wired link or wirelessly, and provides sufficient system resources to support thin-client applications such as Yahoo Connected TV widgets or the Adobe Flash Platform for the Digital Home.

“IETVs provide easy, integrated Internet access, attracting the interest of consumers,” Tseng said. “Because of this, all the major brands now are offering more flat-panel sets with Internet connectivity, including Samsung, Sony, LG Electronics, Vizio, Sharp and Panasonic. IETVs now are available at lower price tags and in a greater variety of screen sizes than ever before, from 24 to 65 inches.”

iSuppli forecasts worldwide sales of IETVs will rise to 87.6 million units by 2013, up from 14.7 million in 2009. An estimated 60 percent of total North American flat-panel TVs shipped in 2013 are expected to be IETVs.

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