CEA: Mobile devices integral to CE industry growth

Yesterday saw CES come to the UK for the second year running. CES Unveiled London represents an opportunity for the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) to give the UK media some insight into the latest technology trends, and provide a preview of what to expect at CES in January.

The event was hosted by CEA President and CEO, Gary Shapiro, while Steve Koenig (Director of Industry Analysis) and Shawn DuBravac (Chief Economist & Director of Research) presented data on the state and future of the consumer electronics industry.

Despite much of the data being US focused, it’s probably reasonably indicative of the UK too. Some of the information wasn’t surprising, with the CEA citing tablets as the major growth area for the Christmas period, although the level of predicted growth was surprising. The CEA is estimating a growth rate of 112 per cent for tablets, proving that their popularity is showing no sign of waning.

The TV market looks set to shrink by just over a per cent, but the prediction for soundbars is a healthy 54 per cent increase – perhaps suggesting the most consumers have bought a new TV recently and are now thinking of upgrading their experience with better audio.

The most impactful set of figures, however, highlighted the annual growth of CE products as a whole. It wasn’t the six per cent growth that gave pause for thought though, but rather the fact that if smartphones and tablets were removed from the equation, that figure would change to a five per cent reduction!

There’s no getting away from the fact that mobile devices are driving the CE industry forward – 3m iPad sales in one weekend makes that pretty clear. But it will be interesting to see what effect that has on other markets. One of the other areas where the CEA predicted growth is headphones, which potentially indicates that consumers are looking to get the best experience from those mobile devices.

The CEA is also predicting significant increases in the digital health and fitness sector, along with automotive technology, both of which will feature prominently at CES 2013 in Las Vegas early next year.

ITProPortal will be live at CES from 07 January, reporting on what to expect from the tech world in 2013.