While the U.S. economy continues in its slump, it's not taking a lot of tele-centric products and services with it, it seems. In fact, projected new HD-panel sales have not lessened noticeably in the past year as some other products on a seasonal basis, and some "support services" such as NFL telecasts this fall have increased in viewership over past years.
One key incentive keeping a lot of folks at home these days are relatively new, larger flat-screens — most of them LCD. According to media analyst iSuppli, LCD HD sales are likely to jump over last year during the coming holiday season that officially gets underway on Black Friday, Nov. 27.
The El Segundo, Calif.-based firm predicts that American LCD shipments (mostly HD) should reach about 8 million units in the fourth quarter — climaxing with the holiday season. If accurate, that will show a 7.3-percent jump (from 7.5 million) in last year's final quarter.
This U.S. trend stands in sharp contrast to the overall consumer electronics market globally, according to iSuppli, which is widely projected to decline in the fourth quarter over a year ago.
Also, iSuppli thinks a fair number of LCD set buyers this quarter will not necessarily be first-time DTV consumers. The consultancy said "although most U.S. consumers already have purchased LCD-TVs in the past, low prices now are luring them to buy new sets that have higher quality images and improved features" such as 1080p, LED backlighting, 120Hz and 240Hz.
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