Canadian digital TV subscriber rate softening - Decima


Ottawa, - The number of Canadian households subscribing to digital television service from satellite, cable, wireless cable, or telephone companies increased by approximately 21% or 600,000 in 2002, according to research in a new report from Ottawa-based Decima Publishing Inc. However, digital TV subscriber growth was down sharply from that recorded in 2001.

"Both satellite TV and digital cable experienced lower subscriber growth in 2002 compared to 2001," says Mario Mota, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Decima Publishing. "It's clear from our latest research that Canadian broadcast distributors have already attracted early adopters to digital TV.

The challenge they face is to convince consumers to upgrade to digital TV service to receive value-added services and features such as video-on-demand and high-definition television programming."

The number of digital TV subscribers in Canada increased by 5% or about 170,000 in the fourth quarter of 2002 to top 3.4 million at year-end, according to Decima Publishing's The Digital Domain: Tracking the Growth and Development of the Canadian Digital TV Market. However, digital TV providers added far fewer subscribers between August/September and November/December 2002 compared to the same period the previous year.

Despite lower subscriber growth in 2002, the Canadian broadcast distribution industry is firmly in transition from analog to digital and the competition is intense, according to the report, which highlights winning marketing strategies. According to Decima Publishing's research, Canada's two satellite TV providers continued to dominate the digital environment at November/December 2002.

Together, Bell ExpressVu and Star Choice had 61% market share at the end of 2002 versus cable's 37%. Decima Publishing estimates that these percentages will be 59% and 39% at the end of 2003 and 57% and 41% at the end of 2004.

The Digital Domain: Tracking the Growth and Development of the Canadian Digital TV Market is the most in-depth analysis available of the Canadian digital TV distribution market, including exclusive glimpses into the numbers being posted by non-public companies. Released today, Vol. 2, Report 3 of The Digital Domain is the third installment in the second volume of this quarterly series of market overview reports.

It contains 200+ pages of key digital TV market information, including subscriber statistics, market share data, digital penetration rates of cable operators, and digital TV subscriber forecasts. The report also details the package offerings of each of Canada's digital television providers, and provides concise summaries for each aspect of the competitive landscape.

For more information about The Digital Domain and to view a Table of Contents, Table of Figures, and Introduction, visit and click on the banner ad at the bottom of the page. For additional details or to order the report, contact Mario Mota.

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