2 May 2022

Key market trends revealed at IFA Digital Press Conference

Trends to premium goods, home cinema, cloud gaming and omni-channel… key statistics and figures from GfK and a guide to future trends by Omdia were highlighted at the IFA digital press conference 2022 on 27 April.

At the conference, GfK global strategic insights analyst Norbert Herzog and Omdia research director Paul Gray offered their insights on the consumer electronics market.

In terms of the key trends shaping 2022, GfK’s Herzog commented that “we have to think of 2021 as an exceptional, record year with growth of 12%. Naturally, we will see some challenges ahead with this base in mind.”

Among those challenges mentioned were increasing prices of raw materials and logistic costs, as well as the Covid-19 Omicron wave hitting production in China. Herzog also noted the Ukrainian/Russia conflict having a “significant impact on European consumer sentiment, so that we have the lowest levels within the last 12 months of a negative index number of 0.5”.

“This means we will see deceleration of growth in the market,” he said. “While we have seen significant growth of $150bn (€142bn) in 2021, our forecast for 2022 is $35bn (€33bn) – 75% less growth compared to last year but still 2% growth overall”.

In terms of opportunities, Herzog pointed to the fact that more consumers want to work from home for at least three days or more a week (63%), and that they were now looking to upgrade to products that are not only more feature-rich but also more sustainable.

He noted that premium sales grew by 32% in 2021, and that every fourth dollar is now spent on such aspirational products.

Paul Gray, research director for market analyst Omdia Electronics also gave his perspective on trends, noting that cloud gaming and home cinema would see a big boost in 2022 and beyond.

He noted the increase in TV watching driven by the pandemic – both linear, live TV from broadcasters but also from streaming. He says we will see new players entering the TV market – SKY Glass, or Amazon OMNI in the US – and that the purchasing model would become “more like mobile phone buying, where you have the hardware as part of a subscription.”

“We also expect the home cinema market to grow as more consumers take advantage of Hollywood also now releasing movies in the cinema and onto streaming platforms simultaneously,” he continued. “We expect this to all add value to the home cinema market.”

Another way brands are adding value, Gray says, is through the move towards emissive technologies such as OLED which have grown very strongly in Europe. “Samsung this year will launch its QD OLED products and it will be interesting to see how LCD technologies such mini-LED fight back or respond to the challenge of OLED,” he said.

A final trend to watch very carefully, Gray says, is the new players entering into the TV market – with service providers such as Sky and Amazon launching their own TVs – Sky with Sky Glass in the UK and Amazon with it’s OMNI TV in the US.

Omdia’s Paul Gray presenting at the IFA Digital Press Conference 2022

This could represent a shift in the way people buy TV hardware where it becomes much more like the way people buy mobile phones; where you have the hardware as part of the subscription package. So, it will be really interesting to see what happens with that.”

Gray went on to add that consumers are increasingly looking for a digital and physical purchasing journey and that retailers who make this seamless will give them “a big opportunity for the win” in 2022.

For more coverage of the IFA Digital Press Conference 2022, click here.

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