Arlington, VA – 01/10/2012 – In 2012, the consumer electronics (CE) industry will surpass $200 billion in overall revenues in the U.S. for the first time, according to the latest semi-annual industry forecast from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)®. CEA released the forecast this morning at the 2012 International CES®, the world's largest consumer technology tradeshow.
Total domestic industry shipment revenues continue to grow and are projected to surpass $202 billion in 2012, an all-time high for the industry. The industry will grow 3.7 percent in 2012, after reaching an estimated $195.2 billion in revenues in 2011. The CE industry is projected to grow nearly twice as fast in 2012 than the forecasted U.S. GDP growth of two percent.
"Technology and innovation continue to play a vital role in our nation's economic comeback, and it is crucial that innovation be protected and promoted," said Gary Shapiro, president and CEO, CEA. "While the CE industry should see sustained growth in 2012, the continued health of our industry depends on the overall state of the U.S. economy."
Surging sales of mobile connected devices are helping push industry revenues this year:
Tablet computers are the fastest growing category in CE history and will continue to see strong growth in 2012 with a projected 37.6 million units being shipped, an increase of 28 percent, resulting in $18.3 billion in revenue.
Smartphones will continue to be the primary revenue driver for the industry. Smartphone unit sales will increase 24 percent in 2012 with 108.8 million units projected to ship, resulting in $33.7 billion in revenue.
Laptop sales continue to rise as unit sales will increase to 23.5 million units accounting for $15.2 billion in revenue in 2012.
"Sales of mobile connected devices continue to drive the overall industry to historic highs," said Steve Koenig, CEA's director of industry analysis. "A raft of innovative products hit the market late in 2011, and, as we're seeing here at the 2012 International CES, many more devices will be introduced in the months ahead. Technologies that may have seemed cutting-edge in the past are now an integral part of consumers' everyday lives."
Television displays remain a crucial category to the industry's bottom line, second only to the category of smartphones, the industry's leading revenue driver. However, with household penetration rates of HDTVs near 70 percent, display revenues are projected to drop to $17.2 billion in 2012. Within the television category, innovations like 3D and Internet connectivity continue to be a bright spot. Sales of TV sets with 3D functionality will increase 101 percent in 2012 to more than 6.2 million units. 3DTV revenues will reach $7.5 billion, an increase of 68 percent. Internet-connected displays will also see steady growth in 2012, with unit sales of nine million, an increase of 52 percent. Revenues of Internet-connected displays will reach $7.7 billion, an increase of 27 percent.
As consumers look to integrate their existing electronics into their vehicle, revenues in the automotive electronics category have rebounded. Overall revenues for the in-vehicle category are projected to grow nearly nine percent in 2012. OEMs are seeing strong growth, which is reflected at the 2012 International CES, where six of the world’s 10 largest auto manufacturers are exhibiting.
The U.S. Consumer Electronics Sales and Forecast 2007-2012 (January 2012) is published twice a year, in January and July. It was designed and formulated by CEA, the most comprehensive source of sales data, forecasts, consumer research and historical trends for the consumer electronics industry. Please cite any information to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)®. The complete report is available free to CEA member companies. Non-members may purchase the study for $2,000 at mycea.CE.org.