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New Zealand now a Global Leader in Smart TV adoption

New Zealand consumers, driven by increasing demand for video streaming services, are now a global leader in the adoption of Smart TVs, according to the latest report from IDC Research.

IDC’s just released 2018 IDC ConsumerScape 360 study reports that New Zealanders now own an average of 4.20 electronic devices, of which 77% are “smart devices”, up from 67% in 2017.1 Smart TVs are now increasingly pervasive in New Zealand homes — they are the third most used smart device behind smartphones and laptops. With an adoption rate of 44%, New Zealand comes second only to South Korea in Smart TV adoption, and above the worldwide average of 39%.2

At the same time, the adoption rate for 4K TVs in New Zealand has doubled to 20% in the past 12 months, slightly above the worldwide average of 19%. However, less than half of 4KTV buyers in New Zealand say that the 4K capability influenced their purchasing decision.

Alex Yuen, IDC New Zealand market analyst for client devices, says this suggests that over half of New Zealand consumers purchased 4K TVs for their inbuilt “smart” capabilities, rather than the 4K picture quality.

"It is a testament to New Zealander’s tech savvy that both Smart and 4K TV adoption rates now exceed the worldwide average. It reinforces the underlying trend we have seen in recent years, where New Zealand's overall digital uptake has been steadily growing, to the point where it has reached global parity, and is now quietly exceeding other countries in many areas," says Yuen.

According to the IDC ConsumerScape 360, a major factor driving Smart TV adoption has been New Zealand's growing thirst for online video streaming services. In 2018, 33% of New Zealanders were streaming online video, up from 26% in 2017. The worldwide average for online video streaming is now also at 33%. In previous years, New Zealand had trailed worldwide adoption by an average of 3%. This increase further highlights the convergence of New Zealand with worldwide consumer preferences says Yuen.

Yuen says that Smart TV owners are also more likely to value high-speed connections and high-quality entertainment.

“High-speed connectivity is increasingly important as the delivery backbone of high-quality entertainment. Our research shows that subscribers to online video streaming services are more likely to own a Smart TV, as well as a smartphone. The combination of these two devices allows consumers to access to their favourite shows anywhere they have a connection. These same subscribers also value smart capabilities more than the average consumer. They are more likely to want the best entertainment experience and more likely to spend to attain it,” says Yuen.

The IDC ConsumerScape 360 report series compares digital adoption of devices and services across 19 countries. It highlights the growing importance of digital technologies and services in consumers' lives and shows that New Zealand leads the way in many aspects of digital adoption.

According to Yuen, the silver lining for both hardware vendors and online video streaming providers, is that Smart televisions will become the new normal as adoption grows, and that online video streaming will steadily replace linear television.

"Hardware vendors can get ahead by articulating the value of connectivity between their televisions and other smart devices to their potential customers, while online video streaming providers should pay more attention to delivering a better television experience," says Yuen.

Notes:

1. IDC defines smart devices as any device that can connect to the internet and has the ability to run rich-featured operating systems

2. Worldwide refers to the 19 countries surveyed – New Zealand, Australia, Vietnam, China, South Korea, Japan, Russia, Poland, Turkey, Sweden, United Kingdom, Germany, France, South Africa, India, Brazil, Mexico, United States and Canada.

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