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AT&T, China Telecom, Deutsche Telekom grow IPTV business, take video share from cable

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AT&T (NYSE: T) and international service providers China Telecom and Deutsche Telekom's aggressive IPTV buildouts and subscriber acquisition strategies are helping them take away share from cable operators, says Infonetics in its new Pay TV Services and Subscribers report.

"Telco IPTV operators AT&T, China Telecom, and Deutsche Telekom continue to enjoy strong growth in new subscribers and ARPU, showing that competitive providers with differentiated services can successfully steal share away from incumbent cable operators," said Jeff Heynen, principal analyst for broadband access and pay TV at Infonetics Research.

Infonetics pay TV revenue 2013Global IPTV has continued to rise due to an ongoing increase in new subscribers and ARPU, particularly in North America and Western Europe. The research firm forecast that the overall global pay-TV market will see a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of nearly 5 percent to reach $270 billion.

At the same time, cable revenue fell another percentage point in 1H13, primarily due to a slowdown in subscriber growth in the lucrative North American market, where video subscribers are declining at a pace of 1.5 percent to 2.5 percent annually.

In the North American IPTV market, the big story is AT&T.

During the third quarter, the telco added 265,000 new U-verse TV subscribers, which it said was the "second-highest net add quarter ever and best quarter in almost five years." The telco also increased subscriber APRU to over $170 a month. About 70 percent of the telco's TV subscribers are subscribing to at least three or four services.

So why are IPTV providers winning over more subscribers?

Heynen said that "whether it's an improved user interface, multi-screen video, or even DVR services, there are marked differences that have allowed telcos to grow their subscriber bases at a time when others aren't."

For more:
- see the release

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