HD Sales Show Ups and Downs

According to first quarter figures released this week by DisplaySearch, the market research and consulting firm, new TV unit shipments globally fell more than 20 percent quarter-to-quarter, but over the year grew 4 percent to 45.5 million sets.

Average across-the-board prices for all makes and models ("blended") fell 1 percent quarter-to-quarter, while climbing 5 percent year-to-year to $524--the lowest value since Q1 of 2006. LCD price points fell 22 percent, and plasma declined 33 percent year-to-year (to averages of $936 and $1,562 respectively), according to DisplaySearch data.

North America had the fastest annual unit growth--up nearly 10 percent--thanks mainly to the healthy sales at warehouse clubs such as Costco and Sam's Club, as well as in flat-panel units overall, which rose 96 percent year-to-year (partially erasing a decline of more than 40 percent in both CRT and CRT rear-projection units).

China, down 8 percent, had the slowest sequential decline, and Europe staged a comeback after two successive quarters of year-to-year declines, rising 7 percent on healthy growth in flat-panels.

Globally, Samsung was atop the list for units sold and revenue for the third quarter in a row with a 12 percent market share. LGE was second on a unit-sold basis for the third consecutive quarter.