DTH

IP Video Test and Measurement market to witness high growth

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MUMBAI: From being a virtually non-existent market in 2003, the IP video test and measurement market saw significant growth in 2005.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, World IP Video Test & Measurement Market, finds that this market earned revenues of $52.2 million in 2005 and is likely to reach $289 million in 2010.

With telecom and cable TV companies aggressively offering triple play services, there is a rising trend among test equipment and solution vendors to offer IPTV test capability 'within the same box'. Telecom companies are increasingly launching VoIP and offering bundled video, data and voice services to meet the intense competition from cable TV providers and the growing migration of customers to VoIP-based telephony and wireless networks.

IPTV enables telecom companies to leverage their DSL access networks, and thereby offer their customer base an additional video service to supplement existing voice and data offerings. By adopting such measures, they are able to contain losses while retaining valuable customers.

"With such intense competition among service providers, subscriber experience and quality of service become key differentiators, compelling them to roll-out monitoring systems and protocol analyzers at the same time as they launch their IPTV services," remarks Frost & Sullivan Industry Manager Jessy Cavazos. "This factor is considered to be a strong driver, particularly for the network monitoring systems market segment, and is expected to have a very high impact on market revenues throughout the forecast period."

Tolerance levels in IP video services are minimal compared to VoIP services, in which the conversation can be continued even if a couple of packets are lost. Thus, it becomes highly essential to have effective monitoring and troubleshooting tools when networks are deployed in the present market scenario, increasing the demand for suitable test equipment.

Again, the emphasis on quality is higher in the IP video and TV market than in the VoIP market. This poses a significant challenge to test equipment providers catering to this market. The capital costs of the test equipment used for IPTV and video are very high, running into billions of dollars. Since these costs eventually get passed on to the users, it is hardly surprising that they demand the highest quality possible to get maximum value from the service.

The challenge for test equipment providers is to keep pace with the latest technologies in IP video and TV and to be able to develop suitable solutions to test them.

"With end users looking at channel change time issues before roll-out and measuring channel change infrastructure in networks after deployment, this presents a significant opportunity for test vendors," says Cavazos. "Frost & Sullivan believes that channel changing performance test to assess the functioning of one or more devices under test (DUT) or systems under test (SUT) in IPTV deployment is the biggest opportunity, from a customer target application perspective, in the near future."

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