Latest data from market research firm DisplaySearch indicates that slumping HDTV sales persisted well into the second quarter of 2011 as year-on-year sales figures show a drop of 1% on average –with the modest 3% growth seen in emerging markets easily eaten up by the bigger 6% drop in developed regions. Culled from the firm’s Quarterly Advanced Global TV Shipment and Forecast Report, the sales figures also noted the miniscule 1% increase registered in the first quarter, when excess products coming off the Christmas inventories were disposed of gradually during the period.
Apparently reflecting economic conditions, the lackluster demand for the first two quarters this year resulted in price declines and pressure on major brands to at least cut down onproduction. However, experts are quick to point out that year-on-year comparison is not realistic in this case, since demand for last year was strong due to more conducive financial conditions and consumer confidence in the economy is peaking. Confounding last year’s exceptional figures is the fact that more HDTVs were sold in anticipation of the 2010 World Cup Soccer tournament.
On the brighter side, another DisplaySearch report – the Quarterly Large-Area TFT LCD Shipment Report – shows that quarter-on-quarter (Q211 and Q210) comparison for 3D TFT LCDs panels reflects a 124% growth, indicating that the market is now more inclined to purchase 3DTV sets. Experts attribute the sharp rise to falling manufacturing costs, which eventually translate to cheaper TV sets. Besides, consumers these days are more open to shifting to three-dimensional devices as both active shutter and pattern retarder 3D implementations are now viewed as mature and stable technologies.
Aside from HDTVs, the adoption of 3D LCDs as TV/monitors is also fueling the rapid growth. With the proliferation of 3D games and application in personal computers, the market for 3D-enabled screens is exponentially expanding, with the demand for Q211 estimated at about 250,000 units.