Streaming media players like Apple TV, Roku, Google Chromecast and Amazon Fire TV will in 40% of households by 2017, according to estimates by research group NPD.
Current household penetration is at 16%, possibly as high as 24% when holiday purchases of these devices are taken into account.
Streaming media players are devices dedicated to providing streaming content. Apple TV and Roku are the two most popular devices right now are, with devices from Google and Amazon still lagging behind. These newcomers to the streaming media scene, Google's Chromecast and Amazon's Fire TV, have made significant gains in market share in the past year and a half, according to NPD.
Many households rely on multi-functional devices, such as smart TVs, game consoles and Blu-ray players, to access their streaming content. But NPD's research suggests that increasingly, households will be using dedicated streamers for their streaming needs. The advantage to using a dedicated streaming device includes better user experiences, better performance, and a smaller footprint (for example, devices such as Chromecast and Fire TV Stick are the size of a USB drive and plug straight into a TV's HDMI input, making them virtually invisible to the watcher).
NPD also looked at the top performing video apps on these devices. The most popular video apps were, in order: Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime Movies, Amazon Prime Instant Video, Hulu Plus and HBO Go.