Market research logo; 28 years of Excellence in Market Research since 1988.
Market research logo; 28 years of Excellence in Market Research since 1988.

Need advice? Keen to get the best deal? Call now on +44 (0)1494 771734

Americas TV - 17th edition

Front cover of Informa Telecoms & Media's Americas TV - 17th edition study and data pack

Market Study
Published: December 2013
Pages: For full details, please email
Research from: Ovum (was Informa Telecoms and Media)
Sector: Media & Entertainment

From: GBP 1295.00
Buy Now!

"The Latin American TV sector continues to grow at an impressive rate. Most interesting is that we are now seeing the focus change from adding subscriber scale to revenue generation."

Adam Thomas, Research Manager, Informa Telecoms & Media


A comprehensive analysis of the free and pay TV sectors across North, Central and South America. This fully updated research report is provided in Informa’s innovative new format, designed to satisfy the changing needs of the modern TV executive and researcher.

The report analyzes the key issues emerging now and evaluates the future direction the market is taking. It includes an extensive array of detailed forecasts through 2018.


The Latin America TV market continues to go from strength to strength, assisted by the growing presence of some major players, such as DirecTV Latin America, America Movil and Telefonica. Meanwhile, the North American broadcast sector comfortably maintains its position as the most lucrative TV market worldwide. This status as the world’s most developed broadcast sector means the trends the US is dealing with now will soon be faced in other countries. Informa’s in-depth analysis of these challenges – such as the growth of OTT video – will therefore provide you with key insights into how these solutions can be adapted and implemented across other territories over the next few years.

This year, Informa’s analysis is provided in our innovative new PowerPoint-based format. This will provide you with important intelligence that is:

Much more CONCISE than in earlier formats. The country profiles are now much more succinct, to-the-point and easy to navigate.

Better VISUALLY. Our country updates now have many more graphics. The focus has shifted to analyzing the market in a more visual way – emphasizing key areas for ease of reference.

More FLEXIBLE – to save you time. Our analyst team presents its findings in an easy-to-use PowerPoint format that is simple to manipulate, so you can easily export charts, data and other findings into your own presentations, reports and documents.

More ANALYSIS. Each country update includes a detailed Informa View. This makes it clear what Informa’s take is on each market.

Rich in DATA. You will receive more than 15,000 data points – both historic and forecast – in an easy-to-use Excel format.

WIDER in focus. A new section called “Next-generation TV” looks beyond the traditional TV platforms (cable, satellite, IPTV, terrestrial) and analyzes new developments in areas such as over-the-top video, catch-up TV and multiscreen.

This inventive new style of research report provides you with the insights you need to understand the dynamic Americas region. The lack of maturity in many Latin countries has long offered strong prospects for pay TV and digital growth, and this potential has finally started to come to fruition, justifying the speculation of those entrants that have invested – and continue to invest – in the region’s media/telco businesses.

This positive scenario is increasingly offering a range of lucrative opportunities for international TV players and investors. New technologies are making a major impact, while increasing competition among the TV platforms is helping drive through upgrades of analog to digital. Consistent growth in digital TV is therefore anticipated throughout the forecast period.

Countries Covered

Argentina Honduras
Brazil   Mexico
Canada   Nicaragua
Chile  Panama
Colombia  Paraguay
Costa Rica  Peru
Dominican Republic  Puerto Rico
Ecuador  Uruguay
El Salvador  US Guatemala & Venezuela

What's new
Comprehensive forecasts through 2018 – including penetration rates for triple-play and updated operator-specific forecasts and secondary set analysis

The most up-to-date crucial information to enable you to maximize your opportunities within the region.

Extensive Informa View section, emphasizing our take on each market.

Country-by-country analysis of 20 key territories, including Brazil and Mexico.

Latin America: America Movil and DirecTV Latin America continue to dominate pay-TV growth
Adam Thomas   09 December 2013

Executive Summary
> Latin American pay-TV revenues are forecast to reach US$28.4 billion in 2018 – more than four times the US$6.2 billion generated in 2005
> Between them, America Movil and DirecTV Latin America account for almost half of the region’s pay-TV subscriber total
> Argentina, the long-time regional cable leader, has been overtaken by both Brazil and Mexico
> Digital satellite has overtaken analog cable as the Latin region’s leading pay-TV platform, in terms of subscriber numbers
> DTT is another technology on the rise. Its promise of additional free-to-air channels will put pay-TV operators under pressure to demonstrate their value to clients
> IPTV needs regulatory clarity, network upgrades and compelling content before it can become a widespread service.

Market Status
New research from Informa Telecoms & Media shows that pay-TV in the Latin America region generated revenues of US$18.3 billion in 2012, almost treble the 2005 total of US$6.2 billion.

The figure is forecast to reach US$28.4 billion in 2018 – some four times the 2005 total.

In the 2005-2009 period the Latin region’s pay-TV subscriber total increased by a net average of 3.4 million annually – in 2010 this almost doubled to 6.7 million. The increase again topped six million in both 2011 and 2012 and is expected to be 6.7 million in 2013.

Although subscriber numbers will continue to grow, Informa expects this will now be a little more slowly than the highly impressive levels seen over recent years. A 5.2 million net increase is forecast for 2014, falling to a 3.6 million increase in 2018.

Two key factors will drive this trend towards a slower growth rate. First, pay-TV operators previously motivated primarily by attracting subscriber numbers will begin to increase prices, as they look for profitability over additional subscriber scale. And, second, as DTT launches become more widespread, this will provide a compelling alternative to paid services.

Market Dynamics

A notable indicator of changing TV consumption patterns was apparent during 2012, when the subscriber total for digital satellite overtook that of analog cable, making it the Latin region’s leading pay-TV platform in terms of subscriber numbers. Up from a penetration rate of below 3% of TV households in 2005, Informa expects pay DTH to be the primary TV service
in 19% of TV homes by end-2013.

Another, related, landmark took place in 2011, when DTH overtook analog cable as the region’s major pay-TV revenue-generator. In 2011 analog cable generated US$5.8 billion, compared to US$7.1 billion from DTH. During 2012 DTH also overtook the combined cable total - with cable generating revenues of US$9.045 billion in 2012, compared to US$9.048 billion from DTH.

The rise of DTT and other digital technologies means that the increase in Latin digital TV households has been even more impressive than that of pay-TV. The 2005-2009 annual average was of 3.0 million homes converting from analog to digital. But the increase in 2010 was 10 million and has exceeded 10 million in every subsequent year. Informa forecasts that
the annual increase will be more than 11 million for the entire forecast period.

This consistent growth in digital TV means the Latin region is forecast to more than double in size from 49.6 million digital TV households at end-2012 to 133.7 million by end-2018. Brazil and Mexico combined to account for 64% of digital subscribers at end-2012. This dominance will be reinforced over the forecast period, as their superior scale is exercised to take their
combined regional share up to 66% in 2018.

Average revenue per subscriber (ARPU) has been increasing, fairly slowly, in Latin America, reflecting an increase in the number of services on offer – and the subsequent tiering of channels and introduction of PPV/VOD packages. But TV ARPU is believed to be at, or near, its peak, with the impact of dual- and triple-play bundles pushing down the price of the TV
component of the package. The launch of low cost pay-TV services also puts pressure on ARPU at a regional level.

Across the Americas as a whole (including the US and Canada), the US is, not surprisingly, the overwhelmingly dominant force. In 2012 it had 116 million digital households – some 65% of the pan-continental total. By 2018 this statistical dominance will have been reduced quite significantly however by digital growth elsewhere in the region, although it will still take a
hefty 48% of the Americas total.

Digital terrestrial TV (DTT) adoption got off to a slow start, partly because of hesitation over which technology to use. The US ATSC standard has, predictably, been adopted by its southern neighbor Mexico, but elsewhere the choice has moved strongly towards the Japanese ISDB standard. Brazil chose a variant of ISDB and most of its neighbors have followed.

With much of the region following its lead, Brazil is also attempting to export its ISDB variant to other regions in Africa and Asia.

Top of Page