Smart devices are also becoming an increasingly important category with strong sales and further growth expected
With consumers increasingly inclined towards experiences rather than products, in the first half of 2019 TVs with high- performance features increased their sales share.
GfK data shows a year-on-year increase of 11% in TVs with 4K resolution.
This year, GfK expects more than 100 million 4K TVs to be sold. The OLED display technology also enjoyed increasing market penetration in the first half year of 2019, with up to an 11% turnover share in Europe and robust growth rates around the globe. In 2019, upscale TV technologies continued to trickle down into the lower price tiers, making for instance smart 4K TVs more affordable for mass market consumers and increasing competitive pressure.
While in 2016 around 30 brands were selling TVs with 4K resolution, more than 70 brands have 4K technology on offer today. As a result, 4K is becoming the standard for today’s TVs. 8K went on sale in Q3 2018. At the moment, its average price of around €5,800 and the backlog of available content make it a true niche product.
Although GfK’s consumer data suggests that people are in general very happy with the image quality of their newly purchased TV, sound quality scores below-average on the company’s sentiment score.
This creates an opportunity for external speaker systems, notably sound bars, which promise a cinema- like sound experience. So, while on the one hand consumers are spending less on their TV sets and average sales prices are decreasing, on the other they are increasingly conscious about sound quality and are spending that saved budget on external speakers and soundbars. As a result, the turnover of sound bars has been increasing year- on-year, it rose by a further 7%.
SMART DEVICES FORECAST TO GROW FURTHER
Sales of smart, connected devices are on the up. In Europe for example, around 26% of the €255bn spent on technical consumer goods this year will be for smart appliances including TVs, audio home systems and smart LED lights.
GfK forecasts that the market for smart devices, excluding smartphones and smart watches, will grow by an estimated 9% globally this year, up from €122bn to €133bn.
Technology in homes has experienced an unprecedented rate of change over the past decades, and it is not over. Smart TVs accounted for 80% of TVs purchased in Germany, UK, France, Italy, and Spain.
While the promise of a smart home resonates well with consumers in general, the present reality is a collection of isolated smart devices in our homes. Despite a solid, 42% value growth for smart appliances, and a value growth of 25% for smart energy and lighting in the first half of this year, the largest smart category of smart entertainment and connectivity accounted for €6.3bn turnover, despite showing zero annual growth in the January to June 2019 period in the five European markets.
As the first-mover wave starts to tail off, the industry is looking for ways to renew demand and elevate smart home to the next level. First movers buy for very different reasons than the mass market with product coolness and trendiness both important ingredients.
However, to take these smart solutions to mass market, other benefits like simplification, must be added to the list of advantages that smart home brings to consumers.
€44bn The size of the global TV market
€5,800 Average price of an 8K TV
9% Percentage of growth from smart devices, excluding smartphones and smart watches