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CEA Sees 8% Hike In 2006 CE Sales

Washington — The Consumer Electronics Association is predicting U.S. factory sales to dealers will increase 8 percent to $140 billion for 2006, up from the $128 billion posted in 2005.

This projection was published in the organizations U.S. Consumer Electronics Sales and Forecast.

The mid-year numbers show continued robust growth in the CE industry, category to category,” said CEA president/CEO Gary Shapiro. “Consumers are embracing new technologies in this digital age, as they make new or upgrade purchases for the home, the car, the office or anywhere.”

The CEA reported the increase will ride the back of increased display sales, which are expected to rise to $22 billion from $19 billion.

“Replacement and upgrade purchases continue to drive the display market while prices continue to fall,” said CEA Director of Industry Analysis Sean Wargo. “As consumers prepare for the transition to digital television, we will see more of the shipment volumes move to digital displays as analog sets’ days are increasingly numbered.”

Sales of gaming devices such as the Microsoft Xbox 360 and the upcoming Sony PlayStation 3 will total $12.5 billion in 2006 with continued growth expected through the end of 2007.

The continued popularity of MP3 players is not expected to abate with 33 million units shipping this year, generating $5 billion in sales. This in turn will fuel the MP3 accessories market which the CEA expects to increase 30 percent this year.

The mobile video and portable navigation category will grow to $2.3 billion, 21 percent higher than the CEA forecast in its Sales and Forecast Report last January.

The impact of Blu-ray and HD-DVD will be minimal this year, but the CEA believes shipment of home component models will exceed 1 million in 2007.