According to the Gartner research company, Europeans could be early adopters when it comes to Internet Protocol Television (IPTV). Gartner estimates the current number of IPTV service subscribers to be 3.3 million. By 2010, the number could be 16.7 million. More and more providers are offering triple play service because of scenarios like the one in France where nearly one million households have gone with third-party providers for certain services.

Providers will face the challenge of competing with cable television services and free digital terrestrial television (DTT) channels. A study by the company Informa Telecoms & Media has the number of homes receiving DTT in Europe quadrupling by 2010.

Informa Telecoms & Media expects IPTV-related revenue to climb from €336 million in 2006 to €3 billion in 2010. This increase is not as significant as one might expect because, according to the study, providers will have to reduce the price of their services to attract customers.

Besides, development of the IPTV market is expected to vary from one European country to another depending on the level of competition in telecommunications.

As the European leader in number of IPTV subscribers, France has pulled ahead of its neighbors. According to Gartner, half of all European IPTV subscriptions between now and the end of 2006 will be in France.

By 2010, France could have 5 million IPTV subscribers, or nearly one third of all subscribers in Europe. Gartner estimates that revenues generated by this market could reach €682 million.