HbbTV Hybrid TV's Proving Popular in Germany

written by: Richard Kastelein
Broadband TV News is reporting that HbbTV is going over huge in Germany, according to the latest figures from research firm GfK, with over half a million connected TV sets sold in 2009, close to 15 per cent of all TV's sold in the country. But HbbTV's only began shipping in the fourth quarter of the year.

The article also mentions that 2 million HbbTV's are expected to be sold in 2010 and double that in 2011.

The sale of hybrid TVs equipped with HbbTV has turned out to be a major retail success in Germany, . Speaking at the ANGA Cable conference, Gerhard Schaas, chairman of the German TV-Platform, said that 546,000 connected TV sets have been sold during 2009. The figure represents a market share of around 14% of all TV sets sold in the country during 2009. The actual percentage of new TV sets might be higher, as HbbTV sets only began shipping in October 2009.

German broadcasters, both private and public, have been quick to develop services for the new standard and ARD, ZDF, the RTL Group and ProSiebenSat.1 are now actively broadcasting HbbTV content on their respective channels. (See also Broadband TV News passim).  The success of the connected TV system is even more remarkable given the fact that ETSI ratification is still pending, but this hasn’t stopped broadcasters and manufacturers backing HbbTV in a big way.

Hybrid Broadcast Broadband TV or “HbbTV”, is a major new pan-European initiative aimed at harmonising the broadcast and broadband delivery of entertainment to the end consumer through connected TVs and set-top boxes. The HbbTV specification was developed by industry leaders to effectively manage the rapidly increasing amount of available content targeted at today’s end consumer. It is based on elements of existing standards and web technologies including OIPF (Open IPTV Forum), CEA, DVB and W3C.

HbbTV products and services will provide the consumer with a seamless entertainment experience with the combined richness of broadcast and broadband. This entertainment experience will be delivered with the simplicity of one remote control, on one screen and with the ease of use of television that we are used to. Through the adoption of HbbTV, consumers will be able to access new services from entertainment providers such as broadcasters, online providers and CE manufactures – including catch-up TV, video on demand (VoD), interactive advertising, personalisation, voting, games and social networking as well as programme-related services such as digital text and EPGs.


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