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TV sales slowing down, study says

The sputtering economy has U.S. consumers foregoing television purchases, with the number of Americans planning to buy new sets plunging to record low levels, IHS says.

Easy come, easy go. IHS

Not feeling the urge to buy a new TV? You're not alone, according to a new survey by research firm IHS.

The survey of buying behavior during the second quarter of this year revealed that only 13 percent of U.S. consumers who had not purchased a TV during the past quarter are planning to buy a new set during the next 3 to 12 months. That figure is down from 32 percent in the first quarter, the firm says.

One could conclude that the great surge of LCD sales over the last several years (though it's now beginning to slow) would inevitably lead to periods of purchasing decline. It's also possible that the roller-coaster state of the U.S. economy is playing a role.


One could speculate that out of all timeframes, Q2 (April to June) could be the weakest for TV sales: people are outside more just as the weather turns nicer and there are fewer holiday deals or sporting events, such as the Super Bowl or March Madness, inspiring big sales. 3D isn't driving everyone to suddenly upgrade their years-old TV, either.

IHS found that brand name is less important to consumers as the constant price erosion is eliminating the differential between brands. Buyers, according to the survey, are dialing in on "picture quality, price, and screen size" as key influencers.

IHS also reports that LCD TV sales could account for up to 86 percent of the TV market, giving plasma a mere 14 percent share.

Does size matter? Yes, in most circumstances. However, 38 percent of buyers actually favored the "under 30 inch" category for TVs, according to IHS, which also found only "a slight increase" in buyers going after the "50 inch and larger" range.

The IHS iSuppli U.S. TV Consumer Preference Analysis is a survey of 45,000 randomly selected U.S. households. The data is also continually refreshed out of a pool of 2 million, IHS says. Will you buy a new TV within the next year?