Video game consoles can do a lot more than just allow users to play video games, and they can also offer an even more dynamic experience than straight streaming devices.
Game consoles come with far more computational horsepower than devices like the Apple TV and smart TVs. This allows developers to create immersive and unique connected TV experiences for game console users.
Twitch, which Google is in talks to acquire for upwards of $US1 billion, is one example of an application that makes full use of these capabilities. Twitch enables Xbox 360, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 users to watch or broadcast live video gameplay footage.
Twitch is already the top live streaming video site in the U.S., according to data from the online video analytics company Qwilt.
In a recent report from BI Intelligence, we look at how video game consoles fit into the streaming device landscape. The consoles actually account for more than half of the streaming installed base and are used by a majority for streaming digital content.
Here are some of the key takeaways from the report:
- Half of U.S. households already own at least one video game console, and roughly one-third of these households use the devices to stream online TV and movies to television. That translates to about 19 million U.S. households using video game consoles as TV streaming devices.
- Video game consoles are the most common devices capable of streaming internet video to televisions, according to our new analysis of the installed base in the connected TV market. Streaming-capable video game consoles account for 54% of the global installed base of TV streaming devices worldwide. Internet-connected smart TVs (with a 38% share), and dedicated streaming devices (like Apple TV and Roku, with an 8% share) are still in the minority.
The use of game consoles as streaming TV devices isn’t restricted to the very young. A Deloitte survey showed that video game console owners in their teens and twenties were the most likely to list streaming video to TV as one of their top activities, but the activity was surprisingly popular among older demographics, too.
In full, the report:
- Looks at how many households own gaming consoles and what percentage of them use the device for TV streaming.
- Breaks down total sales of the most popular gaming consoles.
- Forecasts 2014 sales of gaming consoles and the most popular dedicated streaming devices.
- Examines the demographics of streaming TV to console devices.
- Explores what advantages gaming consoles offer for immersive streaming experiences as compared to smart TVs and devices like the Apple TV.
BI Intelligence is a subscription-based tech research service. Sign up now to receive full access to all our analysis, reporting, and downloadable charts on the digital media industry.
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