Saturday, August 30, 2008

BPN 1205 Almost half of Dutch households on digital TV

Recently we had a package offer from UPC, including digital television. Installing the box plus DVR was easy. But then the sweating moment came: would it work or not. And it did work, almost. Some channels showed disturbed screens with pixels running ad random. A call to the helpdesk put all the blame to the splitter and the quality of the cables used; this while the test of the digital TV box showed the signal to be positive. While testing the call was broken off by UPC. Another call to helpdesk delivered a more polite and qualified person to speak to. Eventually an engineer was planned in. Now everything works perfect; yet the test indicators of the digital TV box are all on red showing the signal to too low!

Now I read that half of the Dutch households have digital television. Sounds good. But if they have had the same trouble I have had, digital TV is not cheap for UPC or Ziggo to install: pressure on the help desk, which has to be populated then by incompetent people, and a lot of engineers replacing cables, splitters, putting in amplifiers and replacing outdated entry devices.

The total number of Dutch TV connections grew by 0.4 percent during the second quarter to 7.68 million on 30 June 2008. Year-on-year, the number of TV connections grew by almost 65,000, with digital TV growth clearly offsetting the drop in analogue TV connections, according to Telecompaper's quarterly update on the Dutch TV connections market. The number of digital TV connections grew by 6.6 percent or 224,400 net additions during the quarter to 3.63 million on 30 June 2008. At the same time, digital TV increased its share of the entire TV market to 47.2 percent.

On the digital TV market, Ziggo is the largest provider, adding 87,000 customers during the second quarter to end June with 995,000 customers. In July, Ziggo already won its 1 millionth digital TV customer. The digital TV market share of Dutch satellite TV provider Canal Digitaal dropped to 20.9 percent, while KPN became the third largest digital TV provider with 636,000 customers, equal to a market share of 17.5 percent. Former number three, UPC saw its share on the digital TV market decrease to 16.3 percent, despite winning 29,400 net additions during the quarter to end with 592,300 digital TV customers on 30 June 2008. The penetration of digital TV on the Dutch cable networks continued to grow, ending June 2008 at 30.9 percent compared with 21.6 percent at the end of Q2 2007.

The Dutch digital TV market's quarterly growth will reach 7 percent during the remainder of 2008, driven by steady growth in digital TV via cable and at KPN. The 4 million digital TV customers mark should be reached early in the fourth quarter; the Dutch digital TV market will end 2008 with 4.15 million customers, according to the forecasts of Telecompaper.

BTW Come to think of it, I am a laggard in digital TV

Blog Posting Number 1205


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