Consumers in the U.S. and UK may have started slowing down the process of replacing their old CRT televisions with fancy new flat-screens. But happily for TV manufacturers, there are still plenty of bulky cathode ray-tube sets to be replaced in emerging markets like China, Russia, Brazil and Mexico.
In March, research company IHS iSuppli released projections showing that U.S. shipments of flat-screen TVs would decline by 5 percent this year to around 37 milion — the first recession since newer TV technologies like plasma began to emerge in the late 1990s.
Also read: Is the flat-screen TV boom over?
But while the U.S. market may be, er, flattening out, another research group, NPD DisplaySearch, says there’s still plenty of growth potential overseas.
Analyzing 14 markets worldwide, NPD found that, on a global basis over the last 12 months, the average age of TV’s being replaced decreased to 6.9 years from 8.4 years (see chart). This suggests that in emerging regions like rural China, consumers are shuttling out TV’s based on the older CRT technology, even though their sets are only a couple of years old.
“The good news is that a large number of markets still have a long way to go toward replacing all CRTs with flat panel TVs, which should continue to sustain growth, but mostly in emerging markets,” wrote Riddhi Patel, NPD DisplaySearch research director and author of the company’s Global TV Replacement Study.