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By 26 May 2011 | Categories: news

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According to Samsung Electronics, online video applications are now at the top of both international and regional most downloaded apps lists.

To coincide with this rising popularity, Samsung announced that Samsung Apps, “the world's first application store for the television”, has now officially passed the five million download mark globally.

The most popular online video app by far was YouTube, with the app ranking as the most downloaded globally, in the US, UK and several other countries.

The popularity of TV apps have skyrocketed over the past year as more and more consumers take the plunge and purchase one of the many Smart TVs on offer today. A Smart TV is simply an internet connected TV usually offering users a keyboard-like remote control from which they can surf the web and stream online videos directly to their television set.

Samsung said that consumers are downloading an average of 100 000 apps for their TVs every four days, with the Samsung Apps store now available in 120 countries.

Users currently have access to more than 550 apps on the Samsung Apps store designed specifically for TV viewing, with gaming, video and information apps accounting for nearly 60% of this number.

According to Samsung, the inherent nature of TV viewing seems to be remaining the same, with apps that promote family viewing and shared experiences ranking as the most popular. Among these were apps such as Vimeo and Blockbuster, while information apps such as Google Maps, AccuWeather and news apps were also becoming steadily more popular.

“It's no surprise that these applications would be at the top of the lists globally and regionally,” said Corrie Labuschagne, TV product marketing manager at Samsung South Africa. “The TV is a family-based device and people want to lean back and enjoy their time in front of the TV. These apps are the entry point for consumers to discover other experiences on their TV like gaming and social networking as well as the limitless possibilities being created by our third-party developers.”

Samsung has also seen a growing developer community arise around Samsung Apps, with many third party developers attracted to the service thanks to a number of successful developer contents. One of these paid apps, Skyview, displays a number of night sky constellations and plays ambient outdoor sounds to create a soothing living room feel. It's the second-best selling paid app in the US at the moment.

But what about South Africa? “Locally we are seeing a large uptake of TV apps and are sure that with the recent launch of our new Smart TV range and as the hype around these TVs increase, we will see a steady growth in the number of app downloads, to be followed by a rapid surge in the number of downloads once Smart TVs become more pervasive on the continent,” Labuschagne continued.

As apps make their way from our smartphones to our television screens a bunch of new options are becoming available to consumers. The question is, how long until you take the Smart TV plunge?

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