iSuppli Sees Internet TV Outpacing 3D TV This Year

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NEW YORK — Internet-enabled and 3D TV shipments are enjoying robust growth, with shipments of the former far outstripping those of the muchhyped 3D variety, according to iSuppli.

iSuppli is forecasting shipments of Internet- enabled TVs (IETV) to hit 27.7 million worldwide this year, growing to 148.3 million in 2014. 3D TV shipments will touch 4.2 million in 2010, climbing to 60.5 million in four years.

DisplaySearch is projecting lower shipments for 3D TV of 3.4 million this year, growing to 42.9 million by 2014.

DisplaySearch’s European TV analyst Paul Gray said his firm is hedging its bets right now concerning 3D TV shipments and that explains why its forecast is so low.

“We are more pessimistic, based on very limited SKUs available in 3D — and at stratospheric prices! For shipments to go up 3D has to be at mass-market prices. Our view is that drastically higher shipments are possible, but they have to be at around the $1000 mark at retail,” Gray said.

In addition, Gray pointed out that according to his data only 10 million of all TVs sold worldwide retailed for more than $1,000 pre tax.

iSuppli’s thoughts were along the same lines.

The reason IETV growth will far out-distance that of its much-hyped 3D TV cousin remains cost, content and interoperability, said iSuppli’s Riddhi Patel, television systems director and principal analyst. iSuppli expects 3D TV to remain a niche product for 2010, purchased primarily by early adopters, while IETV enters the mainstream.

“IETV provides immediate benefits by allowing TV viewers to access a range of content readily available on the Internet,” he said.

IETV is also benefiting from the aggressive stance taken by vendors to strike partnerships with content providers, ensuring a steady stream of new programming available via the web, said Patel.

This is an area still causing problems on the 3D TV front.

DisplaySearch’s Paul Gagnon, director of North American TV research, noted that delivery of 3D-capable TVs is currently outstripping content availability.

“3D content for TV remains limited to a small number of movies, plus some sports events on pay TV, which are dependent on cable providers. Blockbuster movies in 3D, such as ‘Avatar,’ will not be available for 3D TV in 2010,” Gagnon reported.


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