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CEA Says U.S. DTV Sales to Surpass 18 Million Units in 2006

According to the at Consumer Electronics Association's new annual report, issued on the eve of its annual confab in Las Vegas, overall year-end sales for electronics in 2005 exceeded the lobby group's initial projection of $122 billion, increasing by 11 percent over 2004. CEA said in a statement it attributes much of the growth in the year just ended to next-gen product lines and innovations to flat panel displays, wireless devices, MP3 products, gaming consoles and software.

It projects sales of all DTV-related products (HD, ED, SD, DVR, etc.) will continue to drive industry sales to record highs in 2006--forecasting total sales of 18 million units, worth more than $23 billion. The group said DTV sales in 2005 grew by about 60 percent to $17 billion. CEA chief Gary Shapiro said the growth is attributable to the growing popularity and competitive price declines of flat panel displays, especially LCD and plasma. (These two technologies, it says, accounted for 40 percent of all DTV sales in 2005.)

Continued launches of next-gen gaming consoles (Xbox 360 was launched in late 2005) will continue through the first half of 2006, pushing the gaming market to $14 billion, according to the CEA report. New gaming consoles now require HD monitors for maximum video quality.