×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Roku Leads U.S. Connected-TV Market, Apple TV Expected to Lag Rivals (Study)

Roku is currently the No. 1 connected-TV device brand in the U.S., topping Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV in terms of total users, according to a new study from research firm eMarketer.

In 2017, 38.9 million Americans will use a Roku at least once per month, up 19% over last year, eMarketer estimates. Chromecast comes in second with 36.9 million users, followed by Amazon Fire TV with 35.8 million.

Apple TV comes in a distant fourth: The tech giant’s internet set-top device will have 21.3 million users. Over the next few years, Apple TV will continue to lag further behind its three rivals, eMarketer projects.

One big roadblock for Apple TV is its premium pricing. The fourth-generation Apple TV devices currently start at $150, whereas Google, Amazon and Roku each sell streaming sticks priced below $40.

Roku, on the other hand, is the only one of the four manufacturers in the segment that does not have an affiliated content service. “Roku has used its neutrality to strike deals with a wide range of partners, including smart TV makers, [over-the-top] service providers and social media companies,” said Paul Verna, eMarketer’s principal video analyst.

Roku in 2017 will capture 23% of the total U.S. connected-TV user population, followed by 22% for Chromecast, 21.3% for Amazon Fire TV and 12.7% for Apple TV. (The research firm noted that there is overlap in market penetration, as some consumers and households use more than one streaming device.)

By 2021, Roku will have added another 30 million monthly users, to continue to lead the field with a total U.S. user base of 69 million, per eMarketer’s forecast. Google Chromecast will hit 64.6 million and Amazon Fire TV will reach 62.6 million. Over that same period, Apple TV will add less than 4 million U.S. users, to reach 25.2 million by 2021, eMarketer predicts.

It’s important to note that eMarketer is estimating the total number of users per platform, not unit sales. This month Roku said it has more than 15 million active monthly user accounts; the eMarketer estimates are higher because each account may have multiple individual users.

Roku reportedly is planning to file for an initial public offering later this year, seeking a valuation of $1 billion. Earlier this year, the company said it generated close to $400 million in revenue in 2016, with more than $100 million from its media and licensing business.

All told, 168.1 million U.S. consumers will watch streaming video via a connected TV device this year, up 10% over 2016, according to eMarketer. Overall, smart TVs will capture the most streaming-video viewers with 81.2 million U.S. users this year, followed by game consoles with 62.8 million users. Blu-ray Disc players will have 29.0 million internet-video users in 2017.

As with all eMarketer forecasts, the connected-TV study aggregates data from “the most trusted sources,” according to the company. Estimates are based on the analysis of survey and traffic data from research firms and regulatory agencies, sales projections, historical trends, company-specific data, and demographic and socioeconomic factors. Media conglomerate Axel Springer acquired eMarketer in 2016.

More Digital

  • Lauren Dolgen Exits as BuzzFeed Studios

    Lauren Dolgen Exits as BuzzFeed Studios Boss After a Year

    Veteran TV producer Lauren Dolgen has departed as head of BuzzFeed Studios after one year in the job. BuzzFeed had hired Dolgen, a longtime MTV producer who worked on shows including “Teen Mom” and “16 and Pregnant,” as head of BuzzFeed Studios to oversee the company’s slate of original content. Based in L.A., she had [...]

  • Snap-Derek-Andersen-Lara-Sweet

    Snap Fills Out Senior Ranks With CFO, HR Chief Appointments

    Snap CEO and co-founder Evan Spiegel has turned in house to fill the company’s CFO and head of human resources positions, completing an overhaul of the Snapchat parent’s executive ranks after a series of high-level departures. The company announced the appointment of Derek Andersen, currently Snap’s VP of finance, as chief financial officer. Andersen will [...]

  • Oculus Quest Gets Netflix App, But

    Oculus Quest Will Have Netflix, but Not Plex or HBO

    Facebook’s new Oculus Quest headset is launching with a number of high-profile gaming titles this Tuesday. Media apps on the other hand will take a bit of backseat, with some key players sitting this latest headset out for the time being. First, the good news for anyone who has pre-ordered the headset: One of the [...]

  • Lester Holt

    Chris Berend Tapped to Oversee NBC News' Digital Efforts

    Chris Berend, an executive who has been overseeing digital video for CNN and helped launch Great Big Story, a streaming-video site aimed at younger audiences, will jump to NBC News to lead its digital efforts. Berend will replace Nick Ascheim, who will move into a new role that is described as “improving digital and product [...]

  • Vogue, Conde Nast Entertainment Make Robert

    Robert Semmer Joins Condé Nast Entertainment & Vogue as Vice President of Video

    Condé Nast Entertainment and Vogue have named former Vice and Fader video executive Robert Semmer as their new vice president of video. Semmer will be based in New York and report to Croi McNamara, senior vice president of programming for Condé Nast Entertainment. “Anna and I are thrilled to welcome Robert to our award-winning video [...]

  • CEO of T-Mobile John Legere (L)

    FCC Chairman Backs T-Mobile, Sprint Merger With New Conditions

    FCC Chairman Ajit Pai gave a thumbs-up to T-Mobile and Sprint’s proposed $26 billion merger, after the companies committed to enhanced 5G buildout commitments and agreed to spin off Sprint’s Boost Mobile. T-Mobile and Sprint first announced their plans to merge in April 2018, looking to combine forces to take on industry leaders AT&T and [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content