A new study says U.S. households have an average of eight connected devices, and said a third (32%) of homes have at least one streaming media player connected to the Internet, a modest increase of about 7 million homes over a year ago.
That penetration is likely to increase the number of consumers interested in streaming 4K UHD content, but the large number of connected devices could put a strain on the home network’s ability to handle 4K content delivery.
Nevertheless, the industry is poised for a break out year.
“Content distributors with an infrastructure prepared to offer 4K UHD video streaming are poised to take advantage of the pending inflection point in the display and TV programming industries, as viewers who stream video will be the first to expect their movies and TV shows delivered in 4K resolution,” said NPD analyst John Buffone.
Buffone said that consumer awareness, interest and usage was rising, mostly driven by younger users, primarily Millennials. More than half (52%) of Millennials were aware of 4K streaming media player availability, compared to a third of remaining consumers.
Millennials also are more eager than other demographics to use 4k/UHD products.
“Younger consumers are watching more video on their smartphones (and) they are also driving consumer interest in 4K streaming on TV,” said Buffone. “As consumers make the shift to 4K capable hardware, content providers will be working to distribute 4K content, and in-home broadband speeds will become an important consideration for viewers to ensure a smooth 4k streaming experience.”