As of March 2005, 10 million homes around the world were watching high-definition TV (HDTV) programming on a high-definition TV set, according to research firm In-Stat. By the end of 2005, the firm projects the worldwide total of these HDTV service households is projected to reach 15.5 million.
According to In-Stat, the rate of growth of HDTV households will continue to be strong over the next several years, and by 2009, HDTV households worldwide are forecasted to reach 52 million.
Even with the rise in the number of HDTV households, there research firm says there are still several market challenges slowing the spread of HDTV service. Foremost among these challenges are the need for more HDTV content, continuing the education of the public about the benefits of HDTV, and widening the geographic availability of HDTV services, especially in Europe.
In-Stat also found the following:
HDTV services are widely available in only five countries -- Australia, Canada, Japan, the United States, and South Korea.
There are currently 4 million HDTV households in the U.S., up from 1.6 million in March 2004.
45 percent of the worldwide HDTV households get their service from a satellite TV service provider. Terrestrial broadcasters and cable TV operators provide high-definition service to the remaining HDTV households.
The research firm reports that a survey of U.S. consumers showed that an amazing 76 percent of the respondents had watched HDTV programming on an HDTV set, although many of the respondents noted that they had simply seen a demonstration of HDTV in a retail store.
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