ARLINGTON, VA. --
Desire for mobility is driving sales of tablets,
smartphones, e-readers and wireless mobile hotspots, according to a new
study from the Consumer Electronics Association.
The 15th Annual Household CE Ownership and Market Potential Study also found that consumer electronics spending was up 35 percent for
individuals and 36 percent for households over the last 12
Sales of tablet computers are driving growth, CEA said. Household penetration of tablets is up 17 percent year
over year. The CEA study also found household increased penetration
rates for smartphones (12 percent), e-readers (10 percent) and wireless
mobile hotspots (10 percent).
Year-over-Year Increase in Household Penetration Rate
Wireless Mobile Hotspot
“For the first time in the 15 years we’ve
conducted this survey, the top four products making headway in U.S.
households are mobile devices,” said Kevin Tillmann, senior research
analyst, market research, CEA. “We’re seeing overall household
penetration rates for smartphones and tablets at 58 percent and 39
percent respectively, and we expect they will continue to dominate the
marketplace in the coming year.”
Smartphone ownership continues to flourish, with 69 million U.S. households now owning a smartphone. As a result, basic cellphone (non-smartphone) ownership is steadily declining.
E-reader ownership increased from 19 percent in
2012 to 29 percent in 2013, and wireless mobile hotspot devices nearly
doubled in ownership from 11 percent in 2012 to 21 percent in 2013.
The study found that televisions are the most universally owned CE
devices, with 98 percent of U.S. households owning at least one TV. In
the last year, Internet-enabled TVs experienced a nine point increase
in household penetration rates, and can now be found in 38 percent of
U.S. households. Nearly three in four (74 percent) U.S. households
report owning at least one HDTV. Among HDTV sets, LCD TVs remain the
preferred choice, with more than six in 10 (61 percent) U.S. households
owing at least one LCD TV.
Households owning DVD players decreased by four
percentage points in 2012, while ownership of Blu-ray disc players
increased by five percentage points. This serves as an
indication that households are continuing to replace DVD players with
Blu-ray disc players, optimizing picture quality on their HDTV sets.
Nearly 43 million U.S. households (36 percent)
subscribe to video rental and streaming services, and another 15
percent of households said they expected to subscribe to at least one
of these services in the year ahead. Video subscription services are
expected to continue to grow as these services evolve. Internet phone,
digital file back-up, and music subscription services all experienced
five percentage point increases over 2012 levels.
Top Planned CE Purchases
In terms of anticipated purchases over the next
year, the mobility trend continues; 29 percent of consumers said they
plan to buy smartphones, second only to the 33 percent who indicated
that they were planning to purchase headphones. Other planned purchases
include notebook/laptop/netbook computers (22 percent), tablets (21
percent) and HDTVs (20 percent).
Overall CE Spending
CE spending over the past 12 months is up
considerably for both individuals and households. On average, U.S.
adults reported spending $746 on CE products, a 35 percent increase
over the prior year, while the average American household spent $1,312,
an increase of 36 percent. Spending increased most dramatically for
adults ages 25-34, up 62 percent from 2012 levels to $1,171.
“Several factors are contributing to an increase
in consumer spending. Unemployment numbers are declining. And prices
are falling across several CE product categories as competition
increases within these market segments,” said Tillmann. “This bodes
well for consumers, affording them the opportunity to purchase more
products and upgrade with greater frequency.”
The study was conducted between Jan. 25-28 and Feb. 1-4, 2013.