Eutelsat C&S survey claims DTH spreading fast

PARIS: Satellite operator Eutelsat, which claims to be the main capacity provider for TV and radio broadcasting in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East, has announced the headline results of its 2003 Survey on cable and satellite reception.

Highlights include

- 43 per cent of all TV homes in 38 countries surveyed are now equipped for cable or satellite (direct-to-home / community) reception (132 million homes compared with 122 million in 2001) showing a growth rate of seven per cent last year.

- For the second consecutive year, direct satellite reception (DTH and community) progressed five times faster than cable. Of the 132 million C&S homes, cable remains the largest method of reception with a market share of 54 per cent (72.1 million homes) compared to 58 per cent in 2001. Direct reception via a satellite dish (DTH or community) rose by 11 per cent between 2001 and 2002 (61.9 million homes) while cable experienced a two per cent growth over the same period. Between June 2000 and June 2001, growth rates for direct reception and cable were 18.6 per cent and 3.7 per cent respectively.

- From June 2001 to September 2002 digital cable and satellite reception increased by 26 per cent in western and eastern Europe (to 28.9 million).

- 23.3 million homes now subscribe to digital pay-TV in western and eastern Europe. This represents a 17 per cent increase between 2001 and 2002.

- 104.8 million homes receive channels via the HotBird satellites and Eurobird 1, confirming an 80 per cent penetration rate for Eutelsat in the 38 countries surveyed in 2002 (same as 2001). This result combines audience growth between June 2001 and September 2002 of 5.8 million homes for the Hot Bird satellites (98.6 million homes in September 2002) and one million homes for Eurobird 1 (6.3 million homes in September 2002).

The penetration levels in cable/satellite households for each region are: 83 per cent in western Europe, 75 per cent in eastern Europe and 72 per cent in North Africa and the Middle East.

Set up in 1994, the key objective of Eutelsats survey is to measure the growth of four indicators in broadcasting: type of reception (cable or satellite), ratio between analogue and digital reception, pay - TV take-up and the use of PCs and Internet access in TV homes as a result of the increase in interactive services and video and audio through the Internet. The survey also enables Eutelsat to monitor the increase in the number of homes receiving the channels from its Hot Bird satellites and Eurobird1 that broadcast 60 per cent of the 1,250 channels and interactive services it delivers.

This update, conducted last September took in 21 countries that represent 80 per cent of the total cable/satellite population in the 38 countries covered by the Survey. 15 market research groups (including Taylor Nelson Sofres, GFK, Nielsen, Ipsos and Gallup) conducted interviews with 26,400 households using a standard questionnaire. Analysis of digital growth was carried out in western and eastern Europe where an installed base of digital homes was identified for each country.

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