DLNA Market Overview Report

Presented by Parks Associates

© 2013 Parks Associates for DLNA

Table of Contents

List of Figures

Figure 1: Cumulative Global DLNA-Certified Device Sales: 2012-2018

Figure 2: Annual Global DLNA-Certified Device Sales: 2012-2018

Figure 3: Global Growth of DLNA-Certified Devices – Annual Sales for Top 4 Categories (2012-2018)

Figure 4: Global Growth of DLNA-Certified Devices – Annual Sales for Remaining Categories (2012-2018)

Growth and Market Trends

Total Unit Growth

Through the end of the third quarter of 2013, over 2 billion DLNA-certified devices are estimated to have been sold to consumers or provided to consumers as part of a broadband or pay-TV subscription (Figure 1). Annual global sales of DLNA-certified products reached 543 million units during the 2012 calendar year (Figure 2). Annual sales are projected to exceed 750 million total units in 2014 and one billion total units in 2016. This growth translates to a three-year CAGR of 19.6% and six-year CAGR of 15% for DLNA-certified devices.

Figure 1: Cumulative Global DLNA-Certified Device Sales: 2012-2018

Figure 2: Annual Global DLNA-Certified Device Sales: 2012-2018


Demand for DLNA-certified smartphones will benefit from the overall growth of the smartphone industry and the growing market share of Android phones. The smartphone has become a legitimate contender for multimedia content consumption thanks to recent trends that feature larger and higher-resolution screens along with multi-core processors. In-home use of smartphones remains very popular among consumers, which encourages phone OEMs to add DLNA support to their devices. To better compete with Apple and Windows-based phones and their multimedia features (AirPlay and Windows Media Server/Extender, respectively), most Android smartphone OEMs would like to support DLNA in order to provide similar functions. The six-year CAGR for the overall smartphone market from 2012 to 2018 will be 12.7%, whereas DLNA certified smartphones will experience an above-average CAGR of 18.3%. The Asia/Pacific and the Rest of World (Eastern and Central Europe, Latin America, Middle East, and Africa) regions will experience the fastest growth in DLNA-certified smartphones (six-year CAGR of 21.1% and 26.7% respectively). In North America and Western Europe, the smartphone market will start to mature through 2015 and show little growth beyond 2016.

Figure 3: Global Growth of DLNA-Certified Devices – Annual Sales for Top 4 Categories (2012-2018)


The tablet has become a dominant platform for digital content consumption in the home, and is beginning to supplant the computer as the preferred Internet-connected entertainment device. This consumption behavior encourages tablet OEMs to add DLNA support to their devices, especially for the mid- and premium-tiers of their product portfolio. The Android platform has gained significant market share since 2011 and is poised to overtake Apple’s iOS as the dominant tablet OS in most regions. North America remains an exception. As with makers of Android-based smartphones, Android tablet OEMs would like to support DLNA to make their products more competitive with iOS and Windows-based products. Support for Windows OS among tablet OEMs remains uncertain, and over the forecast period Windows OS is projected to finish a distant third in the tablet OS battle. 

Consumers are increasingly using tablets and smartphones as a part of their TV entertainment experience. Many use the devices concurrently with TV viewing, though not always on TV-related functions. Consumers are increasingly using their mobile devices to find content before playing the discovered content on their device or on a larger screen. Pay-TV providers and content creators are actively planning second screen services that leverage this behavior, potentially increasing the use of smartphones and tablets for in-home entertainment.

The six-year CAGR for the overall tablet market from 2012 to 2018 will be 23.4%. DLNA-certified tablets will experience a CAGR of 42.8% during that same period. The Asia/Pacific and the Rest of World regions will experience the fastest growth in DLNA-certified tablets, primarily due to the high growth of this new product category overall and expectations for high adoption of Android-based tablets in these regions.


Although consumers have multiple devices on which to view content at home, television will continue to be the dominant platform in the home for family entertainment. Sales of DLNA-certified televisions will benefit from the overall growth of television sales as well as consumer adoption and use of interconnected devices. Major smart TV manufacturers such as Samsung, LG, Sony, and Sharp have incorporated DLNA capabilities into at least their mid- and premium-tier products and, in some cases, all TV products. Because it is a growing ecosystem, most TV manufacturers are invested in DLNA’s success. Smart TVs will experience a cumulative annual growth rate of 20% between 2012 and 2018. By comparison DLNA certified televisions will experience a CAGR of 36.5%. Although the U.S. is currently the dominant market for DLNA-certified televisions, the Asia-Pacific region will experience the highest growth in terms of unit sales, reaching 46.1 million units sold in 2018.

Personal Computers

The demand for DLNA-certified computers in the consumer market has been negatively affected by the overall decline of the PC industry. Although personal computers remain a key component for in-home consumption of content, the PC’s role as an entertainment platform has weakened due to competing products. In particular, tablets and smartphones have become important entertainment platforms for consumers. Tablets have also eaten into sales of laptop computers, as some consumers prefer the greater portability and touch screen interface offered by tablets.  As a result, consumers have reduced their reliance on the PC as a digital content consumption platform. 

While the overall consumer computer industry will experience a negative six-year CAGR of 5.6% between 2012 and 2018, DLNA Certified PC sales will continue to see growth in emerging countries in Latin America and Africa where PC demand is still relatively healthy.

Set-top Boxes

The set-top box has traditionally been a closed environment, proprietary to and tightly controlled by the operator in an effort to minimize support issues, limit opportunities for piracy, and deliver a quality user experience. Because operators wish to discourage outside connections to set-top boxes and because consumers have little choice as to which box the operator provides, certification of set-top boxes has not been a priority. However, a recent trend in set-top box architecture is a move to a centralized, gateway box that serves content to thin-client IP boxes in the home. A portion of these boxes will include modem/router functionality and are designed to be part of the home network. Cable operators including Comcast and Liberty Global have demonstrated such boxes and are in the process of deployment in selected markets.

DLNA-certified set-top boxes will experience rapid growth, with a global six-year CAGR of 48.1% from 2012 to 2018. Over the forecast period, North America will see the greatest volume growth for certified set-top boxes, reaching 12.1 million units by 2018 (Figure 3) with a six-year CAGR of 38.1%. The U.S. cable industry is the primary driver of this growth, due to the popularity of whole-home DVR/PVR offerings (which often leverage DLNA) and guidelines by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) specifying that the industry adopt a standard for delivery of services to retail CE devices. Western Europe will see lower volumes but a higher growth rate (a six-year CAGR of 72.6%), primarily because of the small number of certified set-top boxes in the market at the beginning of the forecast period. 

Figure 4: Global Growth of DLNA-Certified Devices – Annual Sales for Remaining Categories (2012-2018)

Routers / Gateways

While a wide range of routers and gateways are present in today’s market, only high-end gateways (i.e., software and hardware that enable additional services and capabilities) and unified/advanced media gateways (i.e., gateways that provide full triple-play functionality, including conditional access) will include DLNA capabilities. Certified gateways and routers will thrive in markets with high or growing penetration of broadband and connected CE devices that can store or display video. Operators in markets of high broadband penetration are aggressively adding value-added services and are adopting gateways with more capabilities to support these services. In contrast, consumers tend to prioritize cost over functionality for routers and gateways, often purchasing the lowest cost devices available, according to OEMs. Because consumers are likely to connect a wide variety of devices to the home router/gateway, many operators seek DLNA certification in order to ensure compatibility. 

Routers and gateways will see steady growth worldwide, with a global six-year CAGR of 6.5% between 2012 and 2018. North America, with a mostly saturated broadband market and high consumption of video on CE devices, will encounter low but steady growth (a six-year CAGR of 2.7% during the period). Unit volumes in Western Europe will exceed those in North America by 2015, with a three-year CAGR of 6.6% through 2015 cooling to a six-year CAGR of 5.2% through 2018. The Asia/Pacific region will experience the highest growth rate among regions, with a 39.5% CAGR through 2015 and a six-year CAGR of 31.6% through 2018, due to low starting volumes in 2012. The Rest of World region will achieve a three-year CAGR of 26.9% through 2015 and a six-year CAGR of 26.3% through 2018, also due to low starting volumes.

Game Consoles

Among current generation consoles, only those by Microsoft (Xbox 360) and Sony (PlayStation 3) have received DLNA certification North America will see the highest unit volume of DLNA Certified console shipments, along with a three-year CAGR of 1.8% through 2015and six-year CAGR of 3.1% through 2018. The current generation consoles (Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3) will remain in the market for up to three years after the launch of next generation consoles. Google and others (perhaps Apple) are expected to launch game consoles during the forecast period but achieve limited success, primarily due to lack of support from game developers and competition from leading console makers. These alternative consoles are unlikely to have DLNA capabilities since their success or failure will likely depend upon game-based features rather than video-related features.

The significant fall in console sales in 2013 along with prompt uptake of new systems will contribute to a global three-year CAGR of 7.4% between 2012 and 2015. Console sales will remain steady through the end of the forecast period as new generation consoles slowly replace the installed base of current generation consoles. Global six-year CAGR between 2012 and 2018 will be 4.6%. 

Network Attached Storage

Manufacturers of network-attached storage (NAS) products see DLNA inclusion both as a competitive necessity and as an important value-added option for all customers. Virtually all major manufacturers currently seek DLNA certification for the majority of NAS products. With the growth of cloud services and connected mobile devices, network-attached storage products seek to become the consumer’s personal cloud. Out-of-home connectivity has become an important product feature for NAS devices, and consumer anxieties about cloud-based storage options (including privacy, security, and loss of control) should positively impact the growth of NAS devices overall.  

While the global six-year CAGR for NAS device sales from 2012 to 2018 will be 20.5%, DLNA-certified NAS devices will achieve a global six-year CAGR of 24.2%. Japan has historically been a strong market for network attached storage due to the tenure of NAS availability. However, Western Europe will be the strongest market by volume going forward. The Rest of World region will see the highest rate of growth for NAS devices during the forecast period (a CAGR of 33.2%). Growth will be strong in Eastern Europe thanks to NAS demand in Russia.

DVD/Blu-Ray Players

Few DVD players today offer connectivity to the home network and, therefore, do not require DLNA capabilities. However, many Blu-ray players offer connectivity in order to support interactive features that are often included in Blu-ray discs. Major Blu-ray player manufacturers, including Samsung, LG, Sony, and Panasonic have incorporated DLNA capabilities into their mid- and premium-tier products and, in some cases, in all of their Blu-ray players. These manufacturers, many of which offer connected CE devices beyond Blu-ray players, are interested in growing the overall DLNA ecosystem and encourage consumer use of their devices.

Blu-ray players are facing competition from alternatives. New TV display technologies and content formats, such as UltraHD/4K, rival Blu-ray quality and could cut into Blu-ray sales. Use of streaming media services and streaming devices such as digital media players reduces consumer reliance on physical media and physical media players. However, consumers are unlikely to move away from physical media entirely, providing an ongoing market for Blu-ray players.

Global unit sales of connectable Blu-ray players will experience a six-year CAGR of 16.1% from 2012 to 2018. DLNA certified Blu-ray players will achieve a CAGR of 21.6%. The U.S. and Japan will continue to be the highest-growth markets for DLNA-certified Blu-ray players, at least in the short term. 

A/V Systems

The A/V systems category includes a wide variety of products, including A/V receivers, CD players, home speakers, home theatre speakers, amplifiers, turntables, compact systems, and home-theatre-in-a-box. Audio equipment sales have fallen recently but are likely to increase over the next few years, driven by uptake in networked audio devices. These devices include streaming capabilities such as access to cloud services, multi-room audio, and streaming from the device to smartphones and tablets. Streaming music services have become an important source of content for consumers and are eating into revenues and use of music download services such as iTunes.

DLNA-certified A/V systems and components will achieve a six-year CAGR of 13.8% from 2012 to 2018. North America and Western Europe will see similar growth, with a common six-year CAGR of 11.4%. Asia/Pacific will see the highest growth rate (25.6%) but modest volumes. 

Digital Cameras

The digital camera and camcorder industry is in the midst of a fundamental change. Improvements in the photo quality of mobile devices have significantly reduced consumer reliance on compact cameras. As a result, sales are in a steep decline, a decline that will continue into the future. For example, sales of compact cameras – the largest segment of digital cameras – expected to decline by half. While some OEMs are introducing new features and models (such as action cameras) to reach consumers, others are reducing the size of their product lines and trimming costs. Future camera products will target photography buffs and hobbyists. These customers are more likely to have interest in premium features such as DLNA.

Despite the decline in camera sales, the six-year CAGR for the overall global unit sales of DLNA-certified digital cameras and camcorders will actually increase during the forecast period, but will do so within a much smaller base. The six-year CAGR for DLNA-certified cameras and camcorders will be 5.2% between 2012 and 2018. Western Europe will have the lowest growth rate for DLNA-certified cameras and camcorders among regions (a six-year CAGR of 3.8%) but the highest overall volume.


Sales of printers have been on the decline for several years because of changing consumer behaviors, including a move to digital content over printing and the ease of sharing content online. These factors have reduced consumers’ need to print. Home photo printers and inkjet printers are experiencing a decline, while all-in-one printers and laser printers are seeing an increase in adoption.  Despite a several-year decline in overall global printer sales from 2012 to 2018, DLNA-certified printers are expected to experience growth in the Asia/Pacific and Rest of World regions.

Connected Appliances

Smart appliances, primarily refrigerators that include an integrated tablet to enhance the user experience, are in their infancy as a market. Connectivity does provide product manufacturers with an opportunity to differentiate appliances in new ways, but OEMs must ultimately find a compelling use-case that provides value to the consumer for the sector to be sustainable. Some current use cases include food ordering, food inventory management, integrating recipes, and providing meal ideas. Adding audio and video content to appliances is not an essential feature to the device operation. In addition, content that is related to the kitchen is often not made for real time consumption in the kitchen. For example, cooking shows typically condense time for entertainment purposes. Over the forecast period, consumer purchased DLNA-certified units will grow to just under one million by 2018. Asia/Pacific will see the greatest growth in DLNA-certified devices, driven primarily by uptake in Japan and South Korea. Uptake in other regions will be modest.


The software addressed in this report includes DLNA Certified® software/firmware that is licensed from a third party and embedded in a CE device to provide DLNA capabilities.  Approximately 20% of DLNA-certified products include licensed DLNA code, and the percentage is growing. As the DLNA standard continues to receive improvements, many manufacturers are turning to software licensing rather than internal development, primarily due to the required time, the use of development resources, and the cost of development. The forecast and the report do not address DLNA-certified software apps. The forecast does not include open source software/firmware or internally-developed software/firmware.

The growth in adoption of each category of DLNA products drives the growth in software licensing. DLNA software licenses will experience a six-year CAGR of 17.7% from 2012 through 2018, compared with a growth rate of 19.7% for DLNA-certified products overall. The Asia/Pacific and Rest of World regions will experience the highest rate of growth (CAGR of 21.9% and 23.1% respectively) and will represent 65% of the DLNA software licensing market by 2018. North America and Western Europe will experience lower annual growth rates (9.6% and 13.2% respectively).

Parks Associates and DLNA have made every reasonable effort to ensure that all information in this report is correct. We assume no responsibility for any inadvertent errors.