Consumers show strong support for flat panel television

Today, 17 percent of consumers own a flat panel display, but 49 percent say their next television purchase will be some type of flat panel technology, according to research from the Consumer Electronics Association.

The CEA study, “Display Opportunities: Present and Future,” presents both opportunities and challenges for the consumer electronics industry as consumers upgrade from CRTs to flat panels.

According to CEA director of industry analysis Sean Wargo, the current TV market is in the midst of a massive upgrade cycle. Flat panel shipments comprise 36 percent of total revenues and growth is assured with flat panels reaching 63 percent of revenues by 2009, he said.

CEA estimates $22 billion worth of TVs will ship to U.S. dealers in 2006, with shipments rising to nearly $30 billion by the close of the decade, making it the single largest consumer electronics category.

On average, current owners paid $783 for the primary TV in their home, but plan to spend $966 on their next set. Additionally, the average consumer plans to spend $176 on accessories, which suggests a total TV-related accessories market of more than $5 billion during 2006.

The study found that about half of consumers are familiar with the term 'flat panel TV', but plasma is the most recognized flat panel technology. Additionally, many consumers were unsure what technology they currently own and the differences between the newer available technologies.

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