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2019 to see growth of fibre-connected smart TV: SonyLIV’s Uday Sodhi

There are about 30-40 million television sets which are all set to become smart TVs

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MUMBAI: SonyLIV, one of the first movers in the Indian OTT market recently completed six years. It is undeniable that affordability of smartphones and fall in data pricing as well as the availability of 4G played catalysts to the growth of both the industry and SonyLIV. However, Sony Pictures Networks India digital business head Uday Sodhi thinks 2019 will be the year of smart TVs connected with fibre.

“What’s going to happen in 2019 is very interesting from an infrastructure perspective. While on the one end we are still seeing a large part of consumption happening on mobile android platforms, my guess is a lot of this is going to move very quickly from mobile, WiFi networks to smart TVs connected with fibre. I think that’s the real swing we will see going forward,” Sodhi commented.

He said that non-mobile categories are starting to pick up with Xiaomi being a disruptor in the category. He also added that there are about 30-40 million television sets which are all set to become smart TVs through devices like Fire TV Stick and Chromecast. Apart from these, Sodhi also mentioned the effort by MSOs to launch hybrid set-top boxes. Hence, these all factors will leave a multiplied effect on content consumption.

“While we will see growth in consumers and that consumer’s growth will double in the next 3-4 years, the amount of consumption and time spent is probably going to grow faster than the consumer adoption,” he added.

The video-on-demand platform has also unveiled a State of Digital Entertainment 2018 report on the occasion of its six year anniversary. According to the report, the platform has witnessed a rise of seven times in total time spent on the platform. The OTT player grew by three times in terms of MAUs (monthly active users) in 2018 compared to the previous year. The report also added that the platform recorded higher growth from non-metro areas.

FIFA World Cup, India’s cricket tour of Australia and India’s cricket tour of England were the top three successful sports events of the year for the platform by attracting 70 million, 50 million and 30 million viewers respectively.

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