An Evolving and Expanding Video Marketplace


The FCC today adopted its 15th annual Video Competition Report, which highlights how the video marketplace continues to evolve and looks at how trends are changing in home video consumption.

Without question, the video distribution marketplace is more competitive than it has ever been before. While cable in 1992 enjoyed a 98% share of the pay TV market, consumers today see a vastly different landscape populated with satellite and telco video competitors providing service to more than 4 out of every 10 MVPD households. Consumers are benefiting from a vibrant and exciting video marketplace where providers compete fiercely in offering innovative and creative new services.

Key findings in the report:

  • The FCC found that by mid-2012, the number of MVPD subscribers grew from 100.8 million to 101.0 million households between year-end 2010 and June 2012.
  • Cable’s share of the video marketplace fell from 59.3 percent of subscribers at the end of 2011 to 55.7 percent at the end of June 2012.
  • DirecTV and Dish Network remained the second and third largest MVPDs in the country, together accounting for 33.6 percent of all MVPD subscribers by the end of June 2012, up from 33.1 percent in 2010.
  • Telco providers’ share of MVPD households increased from approximately 6.9 percent in 2010 to 8.4 percent, serving 8.6 million customers at the end of June 2012.
  • By the end of 2012 the number of Internet-connected television households reached an estimated 41.6 million households, or 35.4 percent of all television households.

Perhaps most telling in the report is how viewing patterns have changed. The FCC noted, “While the OVD industry is still evolving, OVDs continue to expand the amount of video content available to consumers through original programming and new licensing agreements with traditional content creators.” This is not only an indicator of changing trends and avenues for competition, but also demonstrates why the cable industry has been working so hard to give consumers the ability to access content when and where – and on whatever device – they want.

During the Cable Show in Washington, DC this past June, cable companies revealed some of the ways they’re pushing the technological envelope in order to create a better video experience for consumers. One of the most notable was Comcast’s Brian Roberts’s reveal of the new X2 platform – an intuitive and adaptive cable user interface designed to reimagine how we engage with content in our homes and on all of our devices. Cable is investing big to retain and win over consumers who have more choices than ever before.

As technology continues to improve and competition in the video distribution marketplace becomes ever fiercer, consumers win. Cable has long been an innovative force in the TV landscape and will continue to be so in this highly competitive marketplace.