The pandemic's aftermath looms large in 2022, altering consumer habits and charting a revised course for entertainment distributors. A hybrid return to normalcy offers a brighter outlook for film and broadcast station advertising while posing challenges to momentum for subscription streaming, broadband and global pay TV amid persistent semiconductor supply constraints.
The uneven rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic will make a distinct imprint on the TMT space in 2022, affecting content creation, distribution, device availability and consumption habits.
A 2022 return to the big screen is expected to revive box office receipts, but a rebound to pre-pandemic levels is complicated by new release windows devised to navigate theater closures. The symbiotic relationship of sending high-value movies more quickly to streaming services contributes to rising costs and is expected to delay profitability for newer entrants while softening the landing of slower post-pandemic growth. Sustaining residential broadband growth levels is unrealistic after the pandemic-fueled gains, but the heightened societal prominence of remote work and education has prompted government funding that is expected to further lift the segment in 2022.
Good news is more difficult to find for legacy pay TV. The pandemic did little to alter the course of changing viewing patterns away from traditional channels, though broadcast stations in the U.S. are still positioned to reap the benefits of midterm election advertising spending. Underpinning it all: a shortage of semiconductors will impact the flow of devices and constrict headroom for growth.
The Big Picture: 2022 TMT Outlook