Who will get the biggest piece of the streaming media pie? By sometime next year it could very well be Apple. Driven primarily by the rapid growth in iTunes, Apple's players are becoming more popular, while Microsoft and RealPlayer are losing market share (see Figure 1). Meanwhile, broadband penetration among active Internet users grew slightly to 95.33% in February 2010.
Figure 1: Streaming Media Player Trends - Unique Users (000)
Since last year's streaming media player roundup the gap between Apple and Microsoft has narrowed by 3.8 percentage points, from 14.3 to 10.5 percentage points from January 2009 to January 2010 (see Table 1). Microsoft's share of the streaming media market dropped from 50.7% in January 2009 to 47.1% a year later in January 2010. Meanwhile Apple's combined share (unique iTunes and QuickTime users) rose from 36.4 to 36.6% share during the same period, narrowing the gap from 14.3 percentage points separating the two top players, to 10.5 percentage points as of January 2010. At current growth rates Apple should pass Microsoft for the streaming media crown sometime in 2011. Apple's QuickTime passed RealPlayer around June 2009, near the time that The Nielsen Company enhanced their survey methodology.
|Month||iTunes||Apple QuickTime||iTunes+QuickTime||RealPlayer||Windows Media Player|
|Jan-08||35,269 (23.6%)||12,531||47,800 (32%)||25,800||75,810 (50.7%)|
|Jan-09||44,764 (27.8%)||13,832||58,596 (36.4%)||20,709||81,795 (50.7%)|
|Jan-10||48,848 (29.8%)||20,118||59,944 (36.6%)||17,617||77,065 (47.1%)|
US broadband penetration grew to 95.33% among active Internet users in February 2010. Dial-up users connecting at 56Kbps or less now make up 4.67% of active Internet users (see Figure 2).
Figure 2: Web Connection Speed Trends - Home Users (US)
In February 2010, broadband penetration among active Internet users in US homes grew to 95.33%, up 0.22 percentage points fron 95.11% in January (see Figure 3).
As of February 2010, 98.57% of US workers connected to the Internet with broadband, up 0.08 percentage points from 98.49% in January 2010. Only 1.43% still connect at 56Kbps or less from work (see Figure 4).
Figure 4: Web Connection Speed Trends - Work Users (US)
By website optimization on 31 Mar 2010 PM