Arlington, Va. – The consumer electronics industry will have
stronger than anticipated growth in 2011, with tablet PCs, smartphones and e-readers
driving sales, according to the semiannual industry forecast released today by
the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA).
The industry is estimated to surpass $190 billion in overall
shipment revenues this year, a growth rate of 5.6 percent, which is higher than
the previous projection from January
. “The U.S. Consumer
Electronics Sales and Forecast
(July 2011)” also projects industry
shipments will grow in 2012, reaching an all-time high of $197 billion.
“Innovation continues to drive the electronics industry to
record levels, even in the face of declining economic growth overall,” said CEA
president/ CEO Gary Shapiro. “Newer, innovative product categories, like
tablets, not only meet consumer demand but also help bolster our industry and
strengthen the overall American economy.”
The forecast released today estimates 2011 shipment revenues
of 5.6 percent, up from a forecast of 3.5 percent in January, and assumes a
U.S. GDP growth rate of 2.4 percent. Industry shipment revenues will surpass
$190 billion this year, about $4 billion more than anticipated in January.
Growth is projected to continue into 2012, reaching $197 billion in shipment
revenues, an all-time high.
CEA expects the surging sales of mobile connected devices to
be significant enough to push the overall industry higher than previously
Tablet computers are projected to grow 157 percent in 2011,
with more than 26.5 million units being shipped to dealers and resulting in $14
billion in shipment revenue.
Smartphone sales will also see major growth this year and
will continue to be the primary revenue driver for the industry. Smartphone
unit sales will climb an estimated 45 percent and reach more than $23 billion
in industry revenue.
e-reader unit sales will double this year, with more than
16.5 million units being shipped, resulting in $1.8 billion in revenue.
“One year ago, tablets were a new and unproven market, and
now they, along with other mobile connected devices including smartphones and e-readers,
are leading the entire industry to positive growth,” said Steve Koenig, CEA’s
industry analysis director. “The revenue boost from these innovative products
is undeniable as a number of other CE segments are reaching maturity and sales
are naturally declining.”
CEA estimates 88 percent of U.S. households own at least one
digital television. Given this high penetration rate, sales of digital displays
are expected to fall this year. However, this category remains an important
contributor to the industry’s bottom line with 2011 revenues topping $18
billion. Network-enabled displays, however, are a growth segment, with an
estimated 10.4 million network-enabled displays shipping to dealers this year.
3D displays will also see better-than-projected growth as 3D becomes a standard
feature in displays and is incorporated into more sets across product lines. An
estimated 3.6 million 3DTVs will ship in 2011, up from a projected 1.9 million
units in January.
Despite slower display sales, consumers are continuing to
upgrade their in-home theater experience, and audio sales are rebounding this
year. Soundbars are leading the way, with 2.4 million units expected to ship in
2011, an increase of 250 percent from last year. In-vehicle technology is also
poised for a strong year, as technology in new vehicles is resulting in
double-digit growth. As consumers seek to integrate existing devices and
content into their vehicle, such as Internet radio, automotive entertainment
technology revenues are up more than five percent. Digital cameras will also
have a healthy year with unit shipments growing three percent.
Electronics Sales and Forecast
2007-2012 (July 2011)” is published
twice a year, in January and July. The complete report is available free to CEA
member companies. Non-members may purchase the study for $2,000 at