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DTV Market ‘Booming’: iSuppli

El Segundo, Calif. — iSuppli reported that the DTV market is booming in spite of, or perhaps because of, the current unsteady macroeconomic situation. It also said the gaming category is thriving.

The market research firm said it expects DTV shipments to reach 138.97 million units this year, up from 117.7 million units in 2007. The group also said the category is on track to grow to 252.7 million unit shipments by 2012.

iSuppli implicated that the consumer electronics industry may be benefiting from today’s unsteady economy as it drew the popular conclusion that one industry’s loss (travel) can be another’s gain.

iSuppli said that consumers appear to be avoiding travel thanks to the “unpredictable economy and soaring fuel costs,” but also noted that “consumers are continuing to purchase electronics for the home and personal use.” The company concluded that the macroeconomic situation may be driving many consumers to forgo vacations in favor of purchasing consumer electronics for the home or personal use.

“This is music to the ears of consumer-electronics vendors, which are eyeing a goldmine of opportunity to push their products to families and those looking to stay at home,” said Sheri Greenspan, consumer electronics senior analyst for iSuppli.

The market research firm also credited the uptick in the DTV market to a number of other factors including falling prices for flat-panel TVs; the impending analog TV broadcast shut-off occurring next year in the United States, “and later in the rest of the world;” improving picture quality; the increasing availability of HD content; the flat-panel form factor, which it said consumers find appealing; and consumer excitement about having the trendy products.

On the gaming side, iSuppli reported that consumer interest in video game consoles is being renewed and driven by record sales in software titles and accessories.

It reported that game-console OEM factory revenue grew by 85 percent from 2006 to 2007 and that revenue grew 19 percent in the first quarter of 2008, compared with the same period in 2007. The company forecasted that video game console shipments will increase to 61.5 million units by 2012, up from 48.7 million units in 2007.

Enhanced software lineups and storage upgrades are being credited with responsibility for current growth within the category.