Flat-Screen Prices Climb Slightly Overall

Pacific Media Associates (PMA) reports this week that unit sales for both flat-panel consumer TV and business displays in North America rose 15 percent in October, while overall revenues increased by an even greater margin of 18 percent.

The average shelf price for flat-screens (HD, ED and SD) rose by about 3 percent to $2,840 for October (the last month that such data are available), according to PMA. The tracking firm said it provides "true sell-through data on unit sales, prices, and inventories, based on a sample of retailers and resellers."

Yet prices for individual models in many cases actually declined, but "average" selling price for flat panels rose in October because of what PMA says was "shift in the product mix," as sales increased for larger, more expensive flat-panel models. Nearly 20 percent of all panels sold that month were 50-inch plasma models. Except for the Panasonic line, prices declined for nearly every top-selling model in October.

According to PMA data, Panasonic remained the leader in unit sales and revenues, but Pioneer gained 8 unit share points and 10 revenue share points, capturing 17-percent unit share of the market (nearly double September's unit share) on sales of Pioneer's PRO-1130HD model. Sony's new 40-inch Bravia LCD TV (model KDL-V40XBR1) was the top-selling model for October, helping Sony hold onto the runner-up spot in unit market share, and third place in revenue share.