Market for consumer electronics still booming

- A hefty plus of nearly 10 percent this year in Western Europe - Flat-screen TV and game consoles driving growth - Demand still increasing in 2007 for high-tech digital equipment

Frankfurt, 7th December 2006 - Thanks to flat -screen TV and game consoles, growth in the European market for Consumer Electronics (CE) continues unrestrained. "The CE industry in Western Europe is making 9.2 percent greater turnover, with around plus 18 percent for digital products", says Bruno Lamborghini, Chair of the EITO (European Information Technology Observatory). This means spending is increasing at the same rate as in 2005, according to the latest survey by EITO in cooperation with GfK.

Turnover in the ten most important Western European markets in consumer electronics will reach a total of 60 billion Euro in 2006. "The industry is scoring a hit with customers with the very latest digital equipment", explains Lamborghini. Growth leaders are flat -screen TV, with a 57 percent increase, followed by game consoles (38 percent) and MP3 players (17 percent). In Christmas trading, EITO is also expecting a strong demand for flat TV equipment and game consoles. With 18.5 billion Euro, flat -screen TV sets account for nearly a third of the entire market. Meanwhile, video cassette recorders, cathode ray tube televisions and conventional stereo systems are in ever decreasing demand. In 2006 turnover in analogue equipment is contracting in double digits in Western Europe.

In 2007, total CE demand - including analogue and digital equipment - will continue to grow, but rather more slowly. The EITO market researchers are predicting a plus of 2.4 percent for Western Europe, due to a stronger decline of analogue equipment and some reduced growth in digital products. "Many households have already updated their equipment to the latest standard", is the analysis offered by EITO Chair Lamborghini. The Football World Championship in 2006 largely contributed to this in that it provided a great stimulus to TV sales. But in the future too, high -tech products for the home will fascinate more and more people.

In 2007, set -top boxes to receive digital TV will be particularly in demand (plus 18 percent). With around 17 percent, the market for flat -screen TV and game consoles will also increase strongly. Digital still cameras and DVD equipment are still moneyspinners.

Great Britain offers the largest single market for consumer electronics in Europe, with an annual value of 14.8 billion Euro. Then come Germany with 13.1 billion and France with 10 billion Euro.

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