Omdia: 2020 TV Shipment Outlook Drops 10% Due to Coronavirus

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LONDON—With the impact that coronavirus is having around the world, Omdia is adjusting its global television shipment projections for 2020, estimating a nearly 10% downturn.

After 222.9 million TV shipments in 2019, Omdia now projects that number to be around 203.5 million in 2020, a 8.7% decrease. The original projections for 2020 was for an increase of 1.1% to 225.4 million units. So, all told, the coronavirus is causing a 9.8% downswing in Omdia’s projections.

“Just one month ago, things were looking up for TV sales, with 2019 having ended on a hopeful note and all indications pointing to mild television shipment growth in 2020,” said Paul Gray, research director, consumer devices, for Omdia. “However, that hope has completely evaporated during the past month as concerns about supply interruptions have been eclipsed by rising industry anxiety over a coronavirus-driven demand crash.”

Omdia says that this swing is a result of the global restriction of individual movements and the impact that has on their consumer habits. In addition, the suspension of the international sports calendar, including 2020 UEFA and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, has also put promotional parts of the industry on hold.

Seeing 10% swings in a region is not uncommon, Omdia, says, but it is unprecedented to see such declines everywhere simultaneously. “This phenomenon has never been seen in the history of the TV market,” Gray commented.

The second quarter is expected to see the biggest drop—16% compared to Q2 2019. China is expected to start its recovery in Q2, but Europe and North America markets are estimated to fall more than 40%; declines in other regions are expected to be smaller as they put in measures thanks to advance warning.

Even though the market is currently on the decline, TV shipments are only loosely connected to overall economic performance, according to Omdia.

“Development markets shrugged off the 2008-2009 recession and television sales still grew solidly,” said Gray. “This is largely because television remains good value entertainment—far cheaper than going out. … Omdia also expects that a flurry of rescheduled sports events in 2021 will boost television sales.”

Omdia's “TV Sets Market Track” is available online.