May 28, 2009

TV Sales Up Despite Economy

Flat-panel TVs are still a hot product in the U.S. despite the down economy.

Research firm iSuppli said that flat-panel TV sales in the U.S. totaled 7.8 million in the first three months of the year, increasing 17 percent from the same period a year earlier.

In the fourth quarter of 2008 sales declined, and industry experts expected to see that same trend following into this year.  Sales are still on the down side overseas, but North American consumers have showed a love for having big sets despite the economy.

Joe Ableson, iSuppli's vice president, said the increase is due to "cocooning."  People cut back on travel and other spending to still find ways to improve their home entertainment setup, he said.

ISuppli said that consumers are looking for cheaper sets, and they are more likely to go to less expensive stores.  Wal-Mart Inc. almost moved the same volume of TVs as Best Buy Co., it said.

Samsung Electronics Co. stayed the largest seller of flat panels in the U.S. and Canada.  However, in the U.S. alone, Vizio Inc. was the top seller.


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