31. May 2021

TV Platforms with App Support – Differences between the German and Swiss Market

In October, we analyzed how many households in Germany own a TV device on which TV apps can be used. Today, we look to the south and compare this with the Swiss market. This is apparently very similar to the German market, but a closer look reveals exciting differences.

Diagram: Percentage of TV-HH with App-enabled TV Device

Proportion of TV households in Germany and Switzerland that do not have a TV end device that supports TV applications.

This starts with the fact that TVs with Internet connectivity have gained market share faster in Switzerland than in Germany. More than 20% of Swiss TV households already had a "smart" TV set at the beginning of 2011, two years earlier than in Germany. And the Swiss have bought these devices with more enthusiasm: in 2018, more than 80% already had an Internet-enabled TV set; mathematically, this figure will not be reached in Germany until 2024.

TV Households with App-enabled Operator STB Switzerland/Germany (%)

Proportion of TV households in Germany and Switzerland that have a set-top box from a TV platform that supports TV applications and is connected to the Internet.

The decisive factor for these differences: in Switzerland, the large TV providers Swisscom and UPC/sunrise dominate. The costs for TV reception are comparatively high in the neighboring country, but for many years customers have also received powerful set-top boxes with high-quality software that also supports TV apps. While the current generations of Magenta TV and Giga TV devices can be found in around 20% of TV households in Germany, over 70% of TV households in Switzerland have a current product from the TV platforms.

Smart TV platforms are correspondingly less important in Switzerland. Although Samsung's Tizen dominates even more clearly here, the use is significantly lower due to the importance of the operator platforms described above.

TV Houoseholds with connected Fire TV device Switzerland/Germany(%)

Proportion of TV households in Germany and Switzerland that have a Fire TV device connected to the Internet.

Perhaps this is also the reason why Amazon hardly offers its Fire TV product, which is very successful in Germany, in Switzerland and only to a limited extent. While these are one of the most important platforms for app providers in Germany, they are irrelevant in Switzerland.

TV Households with connected HbbTV Device Switzerland/Germany (%)

Proportion of TV households in Germany and Switzerland that have a smart TV with HbbTV support that is connected to the Internet.

Another difference to the German market is the importance of the HbbTV standard. In Germany, this is one of the most important ways for many broadcasters to reach viewers in their living rooms, also because many households do not have a set-top box that supports TV apps. The great popularity of precisely these platforms, as well as a different media law framework, means that only a few users take advantage of HbbTV offers. This is despite the fact that the technical penetration of the standard is significantly higher than in neighboring countries.

It is therefore clear that providers of TV apps should analyze their target markets as precisely as possible before making investment decisions. In our analysis of the German market, we showed how critical cooperation with TV platform providers is for success. In Switzerland, this is even more true: if you want to make new offers successful on the big screen, you cannot get around Swisscom and UPC/sunrise.

Technical Reach of TV Platforms with App Support in Switzerland.

Technical reach of the various platforms for TV applications in Switzerland (TV households with at least one compatible end device connected to the Internet).


About TeraVolt: 

TeraVolt GmbH is an owner-managed agency for enhanced TV, based in Hamburg, Germany. Founded in 2006, TeraVolt specializes in the development of pioneering digital TV experiences. The agency provides its customers with tailor-made solutions, from market-specific consultation to the creation and technical implementation of innovative products. Its product portfolio includes services, consultation and applications in the areas of Managed Platforms, Enhanced TV, Monetization and OTT. With a headquarter based in Hamburg’s beloved Schanzenviertel, TeraVolt consists of a highly experienced management team and 45 strategy, product and technology experts. https://www.teravolt.tv/en/


Press contact DACH:

Agentur Frau Wenk +++ GmbH
Tel. +49 (0)40 32 90 47 38-0
Mail: Teravolt@frauwenk.de

2. December 2020

The GenZ is not lost: Why we must “tiktokinize”​ classic television as quickly as possible

by Tobias Fröhlich

What do you estimate, on which device do people most often consume video content?

Most of you are now probably thinking about the smartphone, possibly also the tablet or even the desktop PC. But you are wrong. Because in fact, television is still in the lead. And clearly so. As a recent analysis by Park Associate shows, people in the USA consume about 20 hours of video per week on TV (as of Q1 2020), which is 39 percent more than in Q3 2017. The corona pandemic also serves as a catalyst. By comparison, mobile consumption was about five hours of video per week in the first quarter of 2020; even less than the computer with ten hours.

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And yes, the preference for television applies to Generation Z as well. For although TikTok, Instagram, and Co. are very popular with the younger generation, they too consume video content according to the motto "biggest screen possible". Our children don't necessarily want to watch all their videos on their smartphones - but often have no alternative. They lack the money for their own television set and the device in their living room is occupied by their old parents. Believe me, I have children myself and know what I am talking about 😉.

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And indeed, the GenZ sees more when we count individual contents. Many small, short videos, but the length of stay, the depth takes place in front of the 10foot device.

The televisions are smart, the content, unfortunately, remains dumb 

Mobile video consumption in Generation Z is growing by an impressive 100 percent every year. And this is due in part, but not only, to the lack of availability of a television of one's own. Because another problem is that GenZ is always looking for a personalized experience with opportunities for interaction and participation. And that is something they simply do not find on most television sets. Because although the devices are now smart in the TV segment as well, the content remains largely dumb.

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We must change this and "tiktokinize" television from the ground up.

We must ensure that viewers can find everything they need on their television sets immediately. For example, if they are watching a football match, we must give them relevance at the touch of a button: missed highlights, statistics on teams and players, information on the context of the competition. And now it becomes important: not on the 2nd screen, this must be done on the 1st screen. This is exactly what we are aiming for at TVXRAY.

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We want to make the content on a TV smart and thus prevent viewers from wandering off during the TV program, serving their own needs on an additional device. Because that is exactly the reason why our children, and often enough we ourselves as well, use smartphones during the actual TV program.

I will talk in more detail about the problem of first and second screens and how we can solve it in my next article. 

9. November 2020

Amazon Fire TV is more widespread in Germany than Magenta TV and Android TV – but falls behind in actual use

Hamburg, November 09, 2020 -The open HbbTV standard, Amazon Fire TV, and Samsung Tizen are most often found in Germans' living rooms. However, when looking at actual usage, the importance of the TV platforms of Telekom, Vodafone and Sky is already apparent. Meanwhile, the hot potato of the future is the Comcast subsidiary Metrological. These are the findings of the updated reach study by TeraVolt GmbH, which the Hamburg-based company conducted with the support of a twelve-member expert panel and the Facit market research institute.


TV App Platforms in Germany 2019-2023

While Amazon Fire TV (4.3 million households) has the third-highest reach behind HbbTV (15.3 million) and Tizen (5.9 million), it falls behind Magenta TV (Deutsche Telekom), Metrological, Foxxum, and Android TV in terms of actual usage. In particular, Metrological, whose solutions are trusted by Sky and Vodafone, is likely to play a significant role in the German TV market.

TeraVolt, for example, forecasts that Metrological will increase its reach by 31 percent annually and climb to second place in terms of actual usage. As a result, Samsung's Tizen is slipping to fourth place, while HbbTV remains the undisputed number one.

TV apps are so relevant because people's usage behavior is constantly changing. Streaming services and TV media libraries are leading to a de-linearization that will intensify in the coming years.

"Vodafone and Sky, as well as Tele Columbus already rely on Metrological's App Store. The Comcast subsidiary will therefore grow into one of the most important platforms for TV apps in Germany and could even become more important than Tizen and Amazon Fire TV," says Tobias Künkel Managing Partner at TeraVolt, who also attributes a lot of power to Amazon, however: "Amazon is now present with its app-enabled devices in more living rooms than Telekom, Vodafone, Sky or Google. With its prime offer, Amazon offers a product that enables direct identification, data acquisition, and customer billing. These are important factors for long-term success and customer loyalty.

Background information: Last year, TeraVolt had already investigated in the first version of its reach study how many German households Amazon Fire TV, HbbTV, and Co. With the update of the study, this reach should now be put in relation to the viewers' actual usage.

You can download the entire TeraVolt reach study here.


Picture material:

Image 1: Platforms in the ranking according to technical reach and usage in Germany 2020 and 2023 (TeraVolt image rights)

Figure 2: Technical reach and growth rates of TV app platforms in Germany 2020 (Teravolt image rights)


About TeraVolt

TeraVolt GmbH is an owner-managed agency for enhanced TV, based in Hamburg, Germany. Founded in 2006, TeraVolt specializes in the development of pioneering digital TV experiences. The agency provides its customers with tailor-made solutions, from market-specific consultation to the creation and technical implementation of innovative products. Its product portfolio includes services, consultation, and applications in the areas of Managed Platforms, Enhanced TV, Monetization, and OTT. With a headquarter based in HamburgTeraVolt consists of a highly experienced management team and 45 strategy, product, and technology experts.  



About the reach study

The data in the study are based on meaningful secondary sources. The panel consists of 12 experts working for major private and public broadcasters, established and new TV platforms, associations, and other companies. The statements of the experts were used in particular for the interpolation of the data and the forecasts.


Press Contact GSA: 

Agentur Frau Wenk +++ GmbH
Tel. +49 (0)40 32 90 47 38-0
Mail: Teravolt@frauwenk.de 

29. September 2020

Preview of the New Whitepaper: “TV App Platforms in Germany”

Which Smart TVs are most often found in German living rooms? What about the use of HbbTV offers? And which platforms are best suited to reach viewers? Our new whitepaper addresses these and many other questions.

Even before this whitepaper is published at the end of October, our partner Tobias Künkel would like to share some of the most important insights and learnings with you - face to face in a series of videos that you can find below. With this in mind, have fun binge watching the first TeraVolt Original series 😉.



So excited: We did a refresh of our study “TV Platforms in Germany” with new and exclusive insights. Sounds interesting?

Follow TeraVolt GmbH or me here on LinkedIn to get previews and key findings in the next weeks:
- German operator platforms and how they build TV apps
- HbbTV as the “King of Reach”
- Smart TV platforms and hidden champions
- 4 major US players in German living rooms
…and more.

Register for our webinar on Oct. 29th and receive the whitepaper: https://mailchi.mp/teravolt/platformreach


Insight 1/4: Managed Platforms

Every second German household uses a cable- or IPTV platform for linear TV consumption. So Vodafone, Sky and Deutsche Telekom are highly attractive partners to provide TV applications. And they have only just begun to leverage the potential of TV apps - exciting times ahead!

Here is the first of four videos with key insights from our white paper "TV App platforms in Germany 2020". Register for our webinar and white paper: https://mailchi.mp/teravolt/platformreach


Insight 2/4: Smart TV Platforms

2 of 3 households own a Smart TV, a great way to maximize the reach of your video service. You are probably aware that Samsung is the market leader, but would you have guessed who has the second highest technical reach in Germany? Find out at 1:50 of this video.

This is the second of four videos with key insights from our white paper "TV App platforms in Germany 2020". Register for our webinar and white paper: https://mailchi.mp/teravolt/platformreach


Insight 3/4: HbbTV

TV App platforms are provided and controlled by companies like Google, Samsung or Amazon. But if you are a broadcaster then HbbTV is another option to reach every second German TV household: an open standard without any platform gatekeepers.


Insight 4/4: OTT Sticks

Fire TV, Chromecast and Apple TV are great options to turn any screen into a Smart TV for little money. But how important are they for TV app providers, compared to Smart TVs or operator platforms?

This is the last teaser for our white paper "TV App platforms in Germany 2020". Follow me or TeraVolt GmbH if you like to learn more and register for our webinar and white paper: https://mailchi.mp/teravolt/platformreach


13. September 2019

Revolution “Datatainment”​: with HbbTV and TV Apps to the next level of sports broadcasting

Tobias Fröhlich, Managing Director of TeraVolt, explains why "Datatainment" is the future of sports broadcasting in linear television and why broadcasters and platforms should keep an eye on this new type of television.

Just as dinosaurs ruled our planet millions of years ago, linear television has dominated the world of moving images for decades. However, a new species has long challenged its supremacy: digital streaming platforms, which offer their viewers content on demand at any time of day and personalized viewing recommendations. So, is linear television moribund and will it die out like dinosaurs once did?

One thing is certain: the more people digitize, the less patience they have to wait for relevant content or actively search for it. At the same time, the amount of information, affirmations and stimuli increases. Linear television must therefore continue to evolve in order to remain attractive for the digital generation. An important step in this direction is "Hybrid Broadcast Broadband TV" (HbbTV), i.e. the mixing of linear television and online content. Examples include BBC, France Télévisions and ZDF.

But in times when almost every user leaves a digital footprint, this is no longer enough. Instead, content needs to be personalized and tailored to the audience. So that they can get exactly the sort of content they want, based on their data and viewing habits: "Datatainment" instead of entertainment.

This is exactly what TeraVolt wants to achieve. From our point of view, sports events are predestined for this new kind of TV entertainment. Whether the World Cup, Olympic Games or Super Bowl – sport is a spectacle. Such sport events spark enthusiasm. But they often also lead to over-stimulation. So much happens simultaneously and just one millisecond can be decisive. The amount of live broadcasts of sporting events is a real overload. Almost everything can be watched live on various platforms. For each sport there is a stream, a TV format or a live ticker. Some viewers can be overwhelmed by this. They need orientation, filtering according to personal relevance and guidance: They want to follow their favourite athletes in their preferred sport and at best get additional information and statistics – and all that at best without being active themselves. In case of doubt, a video alert can be used to draw attention to a decisive scene and a personal highlight ticker can then be used to quickly capture what has happened so far.

This is precisely the idea we are pursuing. We are currently developing an TV app that will offer TV viewers the "datatainment" described above at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. It will be available for HbbTV, Metrological, AndroidTV as well as for mobile clients. The nationality of the viewer or his or her preferences for sports will then have a decisive influence on which programme recommendations he or she receives and on which athletes the focus lies.

A cycling fan from Sweden, for example, doesn't just see a cycling race. Instead, the focus is on the Swedish cyclist Jenny Rissveds. A fold-out live ticker provides precise details about the course of the race to date. And if another competition of relevance to him starts at the same time, not only a reminder draws his attention to it, but the viewer can also switch on a second livestream via a picture-in-picture function. For instance, another Swede is fighting for silver in a clay pigeon shooting. The viewer switches to the decision and can very quickly see the two to three most important attempts of the opponents so far, to understand what must be achieved now. Cycling always remains in view.

The spectator can get into the sport so much deeper than it has been possible so far. The TV screen transforms into a kind of XXL smartphone. All data, statistics and intermediate results in other competitions additionally can be called up on the live screen. The information the user up until now used to access on the smartphone as a second screen, can then be seen bundled on one and the same screen. All the disadvantages that make linear television inflexible and obsolete for the viewer can thus be eliminated.

This creates a win-win situation. The viewer gets the content that interests him, including highlights, statistics and personalized program suggestions, and the channel can thus keep its viewers happy and loyal. In order to harness this effect, large broadcasters and platforms must drive the development of linear television away from pure entertainment towards "Datatainment".

The dinosaur among the audiovisual media can very well escape the natural selection of the market and therewith its extinction. It only has to adapt continuously to changing conditions. To conclude with a quote from the British naturalist Charles Darwin: "Natural selection ensures that the strongest or the best able to adapt always survive".

We can help the established players to make the necessary adjustments.