DVRs in Europe will quadruple by 2013

Sales boom fueled by cheaper equipment, report says

BRUSSELS -- Digital video recorders are set to quadruple over the next five years from 56.1 million by the end of 2008 to 208 million DVR households by 2013, according to a report from Informa Telecoms & Media.

The report said the long-anticipated DVR sales boom is being fueled by rapidly falling equipment prices, subsidized or even free boxes.

DVRs are installed in 5% of TV households and 18% of digital TV homes. Some 25 million DVRs will be sold next year, the report said.

North America, which accounts for three-quarters of DVRs installed, will double its boxes in 2013 to 99.4 million. Western Europe will see DVR households rise from 8.6 million now to 48.2 million in 2013, while the Asia Pacific region will surge from 3.1 million boxes to 45.1 million by 2013.

The report also predicts cable will overtake direct-to-home as the top DVR platform by the end of this year, with 26.3 million homes against DTH's 24.9 million.

"DVR take-up works best where there is intense digital TV competition," said Informa's Simon Murray, who wrote the report.