27.5 mln digital cable set top boxes shipped in 2006

Worldwide digital cable set top box unit shipments increased to 27.5 mln in 2006, a huge spike in comparison to the 15.6 mln units that shipped in 2005, In-Stat says. The Chinese cable TV market is deploying digital cable set top boxes at a record pace. Digital cable set top box unit shipments in China rose from 2.2 mln in 2005 to over 9 mln in 2006. Revenues for cable set top boxes also set a new record in 2006 at $4.2 bln, up from $3.1 bln in 2005. Motorola and Scientific Atlanta both enjoyed record years for cable set top box unit shipments and maintained their positions as the top two cable set top box manufacturers. However, their combined worldwide market share decreased from 69% in 2005 to just 49% in 2006, as Asian and European set top box manufacturers captured new business in markets outside of North America. High-end cable set top boxes continue to be the key market driver for the North American market. These boxes, such as Personal Video Recorder (PVR)-enabled or high-definition (HD)-capable set top boxes, accounted for over 8 mln unit shipments in 2006, up from the 6 mln that shipped in 2005.