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Informa research: OTT, Multiscreen and Cloud TV Spark Innovation for MENA's Connected TV Market

12 Aug 2013 16:19

Connected TV is rapidly evolving in MENA region (Middle East and North Africa), with providers, broadcasters and manufacturers such as STC, OSN (Orbit Showtime Network) and Samsung already offering consumers increased access to content through smart devices. This growing saturation of the market provides the backdrop for this year's TV Connect MENA, which has developed in recent years to focus on IPTV, OTTtv, multiscreen and cloud TV services for regional service providers.

The number of connected devices, particularly tablets, is fuelling demand for OTT, cloud and multiscreen services in MENA, and is expected to dramatically increase over the next five years. Informa Telecoms & Media reports that 6.5 million tablets were sold across the Middle East and Africa in 2012. That figure is forecast to increase to a staggering 32.1 million in 2016.

Michael Dean, Research Analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media, comments on the growth opportunity: "The OTT-content and services landscape across MENA has traditionally been rather barren, but the situation is changing quickly with OTT start-ups starting to emerge, and the number of rival operator initiatives increasing."

"Mobile broadband may currently be in the nascent stages across much of the region but it is increasingly becoming a greater growth area for rural internet users in many MENA markets. In addition, the Gulf Cooperation Council is scheduling to have LTE networks in place by end-2013, meaning there will be a further rise in mobile data usage. This will undoubtedly place more demand on increased content delivery. Saudi Arabia and the UAE alone already have traditionally high levels of TV content consumption. For example, according to OSN, the average household watches six to seven hours of TV content per day," adds Dean.

Focussing on OTTtv, multiscreen and cloud TV services, and the opportunities within the IPTV industry, the annual TV Connect MENA holds more relevance than ever for service providers, telecom/cable/satellite operators, broadcasters, content providers, gaming aggregators and CE manufacturers.

Kamelija Stefanova, the conference director of TV Connect MENA, comments: "The event will explore OTT and IPTV convergence; offer presentations about developing content monetisation strategies; look at the business of CDNs and data centres for telecom operators; assess the role of advertising agencies in the connected media space; show best practice OTT and IPTV projects; and see how multiscreen services are becoming part of the digital home. We as organisers are in a unique position to provide one meeting place for broadband, LTE and TV markets and offer learning opportunities for maximising the power of 4G/LTE networks to offer TV on the Go, utilising user interface for improved content discovery and using apps for on-demand video services."

The conference and exhibition has already gained support from the region's key players, including Etisalat, Du, Qtel, Batelco, Omantel, Tunisie Telecom, Telecom Egypt and Zain; plus, a series of content providers from the likes of OSN, Al Jazeera, Rotana, MBC and Multichoice.

Hadi Raad, Head of Marketing - Emerging Arabia (MENA) at Google, is already confirmed to deliver a presentation on 'Multiscreen and mobility taking generations by storm: catering to ever expanding demand for video content.' He comments: "Bringing online entertainment to the biggest screen at home is inevitable. I'm thrilled with all the developments making consumer experience rich and ubiquitous." This highlights the dedication of the world's most powerful internet giant Google to enter the TV market and reinforces the importance of the event to act as a hub for setting strategic direction for service providers in the region.

The event programme includes keynote presentations from a stellar speaker line-up including Rashed Majed Alabbar, VP of Home Product Marketing at Etisalat; David Hanson, Director of Digital at OSN; Jayhun Mollazade, CEO, Azqtel; and Fares Akkad, Head of Distribution and Digital Business Development, MBC; amongst others.

The 2013 conference and exhibition will take place at the Park Hyatt, Dubai on 5-6 November. To view the full event programme and register for TV Connect MENA 2013, please visit http://mena.tvconnectevent.com/ or call +44 (0) 20 7017 5506. Alternatively, keep up to date with event news on Twitter @TVConnectMENA.

About TV Connect Middle East and North Africa 2013

 TV Connect Middle East and North Africa is the only major TV event in the region that includes all TV providers in the connected TV delivery ecosystem. It has created a level playing field for creatives and technology developers alike to bring the next generation TV experience and introduce services like pause, rewind, catch up and fast forward in the linear TV package. For further information, go to http://mena.tvconnectevent.com/.

About Informa Telecoms & Media

Informa Telecoms and Media (www.informatandm.com) organises 125 global annual events, attended by more than 70,000 executives worldwide. With a focus on quality content, Informa Telecoms and Media deliver a key audience of decision-makers from the mobile, fixed, alternative, wholesale, MVNO, broadband and satellite operator communities. Informa Telecoms and Media is also the leading provider of business intelligence and strategic services to the global telecoms and media markets. Driven by constant first-hand contact with the industry, its 90 analysts and researchers produce a range of intelligence services including news and analytical products, in depth market reports and datasets focussed on technology, strategy and content.

For media information please contact Dana Corson at dana.corson@proactive-pr.com or Holly Tyrrell at holly.tyrrell@proactive-pr.com, or call on +44 1636 812152.