More than 3 billion connected devices, with help from Apple's AirPlay, to ship through 2016

A new report says Internet connected devices shipped through 2016 could total more than 3 billion, with a compound annual growth rate expected to hover near 21 percent.

ABI Research forecast said that TVs and Blu-ray players will be at the head of the wave.

"TV and video player connectivity is being strongly driven by streaming services such as Netflix in the United States and Lovefilm in the U.K.," said ABI Research practice director Jason Blackwell. "Gaming consoles also create powerful demand for connectivity; although connected consoles are nothing new, they still rank strongly in connected home entertainment and will see increased shipment numbers through 2014."

Blackwell called out Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) AirPlay for special notice, saying its ability to wirelessly stream music and video throughout the home "will also help drive demand," especially for online radio providers like Pandora, and the music streaming services from firms such as Rhapsody, Melon and Spotify.

For more:
- see this release

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