The term “universal addressability” was at the heart of CRTC’s public hearings in 1993 when the regulator was seeking to define how the Canadian broadcasting industry should prepare its “digital future”.

Due to new technology developments – more precisely, to digital video compression (DVC) – Canadian cable and satellite distributors were expected to increase their distribution capacities to transmit different programming services directly to individual subscribers. It was a new era for multichannel television and subscription to TV packages. These new technologies allowed to substantially increase the number of specialty channels, better support Pay-TV business models, and opened the door to IPTV. To this day, these elements remain fundamental attributes of the Canadian television market.

However, as established in previous trends reports, digital technologies have continued to evolve, and influence content consumers’ behaviour. Many viewers now demand greater control and deeper engagement with content. In fact, we believe that 2013 will be remembered as a “tipping point” towards a new era for television in which we can see new practices becoming widely adopted models for the industry. This could be characterized– to paraphrase the CRTC’s wording from 1993 – as the phase of “universal accessibility”.

What you will read in this report

  1. Upgradable devices and personalisation are keys to greater consumer access;
  2. The industry is undergoing a consumer-driven transition, revising rights management regimes due to content piracy;
  3. There is an undisputable appetite for TV-like content;
  4. Value is now generated by the relationship between audience and content;
  5. Social TV opening the doors to monetization;
  6. Accessing and harnessing users’ data is likely to become the most important competitive advantage in the media market.