Port Washington, N.Y. — Sales of personal navigation devices (PNDs) are still climbing despite a souring economy and high gas prices, but at about a third of the pace of last year, according to recent data from the The NPD Group.
Dollar sales though May this year were up by 53 percent, and unit sales to consumers up by 136 percent. Average selling prices also showed a 35 percent decline for the period.
NPD industry analysis director Ross Rubin said, “It hardly seems that economic concerns have hurt the category. It’s still a strong growing category and as prices continue to drop, it becomes more accessible to less affluent consumers. I’d say it’s doing well.”
Nevertheless, growth is considerably slower than last year when sales for January through May 2007 increased 150 percent in dollars and 313 percent units over the period in 2006. Average selling prices at that time declined 39 percent.
Looking at recent PND sales for the month of May only, sales increased 45 percent in dollars and 117 percent in units. Average selling prices for the month of May fell 33 percent.
In general, the market typically enters a quiet period at this time of year, after Dads and Grads and Fourth of July sales, and begins to heat up again in late October, said industry members.