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.


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