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LCD TV sales slump

Shipments drop for the first time ever

TV sales drop

Global LCD TV shipments have dropped for the first time ever with a 3% fall at the start of 2012.

This is the first time sales of flatscreen TVs have dropped since they were introduced. A lack of interest in 3D, high LCD ownership and the economy have been suggested as reasons for the slump.

According to research company NPD DisplaySearch, shipments in the first quarter of 2012 for LCD TVs are down 3% on the same period of 2011. The figures for plasma TV sales were worse with shipments dropping by 18%.

TV sales fatigue

One of the challenges manufacturers face is that ownership of LCD TVs and other flatscreen TVs is now relatively high while consumers have traditionally upgraded their TV less often than their smartphone or computers.

Attempts to interest consumers in new technology – most notably 3DTV – have met with only lukewarm sales. Similarly, the push by manufacturers to produce thinner TVs with bigger screens – as witnessed at this year’s CES – has not been enough to tempt TV owners into upgrading

Smart TV and internet TV

Smart TV’s have also struggled to capture the public’s imagination – possibly hampered by limited functionality and a lack of services.

Consumers also now have a range of options for upgrading existing TV sets through the use of set-top boxes and subscription services, which may have further damaged sales.

Ask Which? about TVs

Which? is holding a live Q&A session on July 10 for members to ask our experts any questions about TVs, from buying advice, what features to look out for or the best way to get smart TV services on an existing set. Sign up for live TV Q&A event here.

More on this…

  • Live TV Q&A – ask our experts any TV question
  • LCD, LED and plasma TV reviews – see which models perform best in our lab tests
  • How to buy the best TV – advice on choosing the the right set for you
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