By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
It's been a year since The Home Depot brought consumer electronics into its brick-and-mortar stores with a limited-time, seven-SKU assortment of A/V products.
This holiday season, the home-improvement chain chose to keep its CE selection out of the stores and on its Web site, where it has been fruitful and multiplied.
A recent shopping guide, both snail mailed and posted online at www.homedepot.com/pluggedin, served to remind customers that they can still get a plasma TV with their PVC pipes. Like last year's in-store selection, Philips still plays a prominent role, with two 768p plasma TVs in 42-inch ($1,300) and 50-inch ($1,750) sizes.
Philips shares the flat-panel platform with Sharp, which is Home Depot's go-to brand for LCD. Two 768p Aquos models are offered, in 42 inches ($1,500) and 32 inches ($1,000). The retailer also promoted a pair of 768p rear-projection LCD-TVs from Panasonic in 61-inch ($2,000) and 56-inch ($1,700) sizes.
Besides TVs, notebook computers also featured prominently in the shopping guide, with three SKUs each from Toshiba and Lenovo at price points ranging from $600 to $1,650. Sony was also represented with a Vaio notebook, PC and LCD TV combo unit, and base station for streaming content from a cable or satellite box. Home Depot also pitched an assortment of PC accessories from Microsoft, including wireless keyboards and mice, Web cams and a digital USB stereo headset. The company's 30GB Zune digital media player was also represented, along with a Zune home A/V kit, as was an Xbox 360 Tony Stewart Ultimate Driving Experience package, a Home Depot.com exclusive for $550.
This TWICE webinar, hosted by senior editor Alan Wolf, will take a look at what may be the hottest CE products at retail that will be sold during the all-important fourth quarter. Top technologies, market strategies and industry trends will be discussed with industry analysts and executives.