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Inflation Pushes 2022 Streaming Device Shipments Down, Kagan Says

Multiscreen video streaming
(Image credit: Future)

Global streaming media device shipments are expected to fall 1.2% in 2022 to 80 million units, due to inflationary pressures, but a recovery is expected in 2023, according to Kagan, a media research unit of S&P Global Market Intelligence.

Shipments of streaming media devices (SMDs) surged in the early days of the pandemic, which in turn affected volumes that would have otherwise emerged in late 2021 and 2022, Kagan said.

Supply-chain issues, including chip shortages and complications in logistics, have
made it difficult for vendors to overhaul their product lines or reduce prices, Kagan said, which has stunted expansion campaigns in emerging markets. 

"The primary challenge to a steeper growth curve for SMDs is the persistent evolution in smart TV interfaces and processing power," S&P Global Market Intelligence research analyst Neil Barbour said in a press release. "As smart TVs become more capable streamers, there is less demand for external hardware solutions. SMD vendors appear to recognize the threat and have actively sought partnerships to deploy their operating systems on smart TVs."

Kagan, a unit of S&P Global Market INtelligence

(Image credit: Kagan, a unit of S&P Global Market Intelligence)

Kagan expects the market to return to growth in 2023, as market forces swing back in favor of low-margin hardware production. The researcher predicts a 4.1% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) for SMD shipments from 2021 through 2026, enough to push the market close to 100 million units in 2026.

Kagan expects the SMD installed base to rise to 313.5 million globally by the end of 2026, from 232.6 million in 2021.

Kagan’s estimates do not include smart TVs, smart speakers, game consoles or other devices with ancillary video streaming functions. ▪️

Mike Farrell is senior content producer, finance for Multichannel News/B+C, covering finance, operations and M&A at cable operators and networks across the industry. He joined Multichannel News in September 1998 and has written about major deals and top players in the business ever since. He also writes the On The Money blog, offering deeper dives into a wide variety of topics including, retransmission consent, regional sports networks,and streaming video. In 2015 he won the Jesse H. Neal Award for Best Profile, an in-depth look at the Syfy Network’s Sharknado franchise and its impact on the industry.