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KEY POINTS

  • 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.
  • 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 come with far more computational horsepower than typical streaming devices and smart TVs, which allow developers to create immersive and unique connected TV experiences. For example, viewers can click through baseball stats as they stream a baseball game on the Major League Baseball app, or they can use Twitch to play video games side-by-side with footage of other players navigating the same game.  

This analysis complements our February 2014 report on the Connected TV market

Video Game Consoles As Streaming Devices Globally

Video game consoles are the most popular connected TV device in global living rooms. 

Internet-connected game consoles comprise the vast majority of the global connected TV market, according to data compiled by BI Intelligence. The connected TV market includes internet-connected smart TVs, dedicated streaming devices, and internet-enabled video game consoles. 

  • Video game consoles with streaming video playback capabilities account for 54% of the connected TV market.
  • Smart TVs, or televisions with a built-in internet connection, account for 38% of the connected TV market.
  • Streaming devices, including Apple TV, Roku, and Chromecast, account for less than 10% of the connected TV market.

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While video game console sales have been lackluster in recent years, their significant early advantage in the market means that they will remain the dominant TV streaming device in the medium-term. 

How did they become dominant in the stream-to-TV market?

Gaming consoles are extremely popular and have mature distribution networks globally. 

They outsell other devices capable of streaming online video to TV, which either are [...]