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Accessories Sales Locked On Uptrend: CEA

Demand for hook-up, power-up and cover-up drove up factory sales of consumer electronics accessories products to $1.8 billion last year, an 11 percent increase over the $1.6 billion registered in 2003. And factory sales will continue to the upside this year as well, with accessories movement climbing to over $2 billion in 2005, another 10 percent increase.

The sales figures, according to statistics released last month by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), based here, include such accessories categories as audio, video, telephone, video camera/camcorder and wireless.

CE accessories include cleaning and maintenance products, antennas, plugs, adapters, cables, power supplies, headphones, portable storage, batteries and chargers.

CEA numbers for 2004 are estimates and those for 2005 are forecasts.

Factory sales of primary batteries, including primary batteries for consumer use, according to CEA, reached $5.7 billion in 2004, up from $5.4 billion in 2003. In 2005, battery sales are expected to climb to $6.3 billion.

Blank computer media — including blank CD, DVD, MiniDisc and 3.5-inch floppy — saw 2004 sales decrease to $1.7 billion, down from $1.8 billion in 2003. It is expected 2005 sales will slide to $1.5 billion.

Flash media sales hit $3.1 billion last year, after nearly doubling from the $1.3 billion reported in 2003. The category, which includes CompactFlash, Smart Media, Multimedia, SD, XD, Memory Stick and USB flash drives, is expected to about double again in 2005, reaching nearly $6 billion.

Factory sales of blank audio cassettes and blank video cassettes continued to trend downward in the face if newer digital products such as DVDs. Blank audio sales were $66 million in 2004, down from $77 million the previous year. In 2005, sales should drop to $50 million.

Blank video cassette sales also continue to trend downward — $527 million in 2003, $433 million in 2004, and $396 million anticipated for this year.