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IPTV numbers still flourishing at Verizon in the US and KPN in Europe

One or two of the major IPTV backers in the Western world reported early fourth quarter figures this week, with the usual result that IPTV installs ar

By PETER WHITE

Published: 27 January, 2011

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One or two of the major IPTV backers in the Western world reported early fourth quarter figures this week, with the usual result that IPTV installs are growing apace, certainly in both the US and the Netherlands.

In the Netherlands, KPN reported that its overall TV subscriber base had jumped marginally to 1.2 million, and it says that it has a 15% country share, up from 12% a year ago. This disguises the fact that it lumps its low priced Digitenne DVB-T terrestrial service in with its IPTV numbers. Separately its IPTV homes, which have a higher ARPU than its DVB-T paid service, have reached 302,000, up 57,000 from the immediate past quarter, and currently is being installed at the rate of 5,000 homes a week. This time last year KPN only had 106,000 IPTV subs so that’s a rise of 196,000 in one year.

Within these numbers KPN has had a real surge in Fiber to the Home (FTTH) and added 41,000 FTTH connections in the quarter and will take that to 250,000 homes by 2012 it says. It’s fiber broadband offering is more than 100 Mbps symmetrical.

The DVB-T Digitenne customer base has shrunk slightly from 899,000 to 895,000 and the ARPU across both services is just €9, although that’s a rise. KPN says that 80% of IPTV customers are taking a triple play package.

Over the pond at Verizon, FiOS FTTH TV (part tuned and part IPTV) customers jumped 182,000 in the quarter, compared to 204,000 in the last quarter, which was a stronger Holiday quarter. Total new FiOS additions, so just broadband, were 197,000, also down from 226,000 last quarter. Throughout the commentary Verizon very much made the point that its wireline business was healthy largely because of FiOS.

There are now 4.1 million FiOS Internet customers and 3.5 million FiOS TV customers and ARPU on these accounts has risen 10.7% to $146 a month from a year ago. Verizon points out that FiOS revenues now represent 53% of its total wireline consumer revenues, not bad for a business that really kicked off as an idea back in 2004.

FiOS Internet penetration is now 32% of the 12.8 million homes it reaches and FiOS TV penetration is 28% out of the 12.4 million that it reaches. Total wireline broadband and video revenues were $1.8 billion in the quarter, up 18.4% from fourth quarter 2009. Verizon says that at the end of the quarter just gone its FiOS network passes 15.6 million homes and says that across all technologies (including older DSL) its broadband connections are now 8.4 million, up 52,000 in the quarter.

Interestingly however Verizon is slowly slashing the workforce associated with its wireline business and this now totals 92,300, down 16,000 year over year, mostly through incentivized, voluntary cuts.

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