The global TV market is expected to fall for the second year running, causing concerns that it may face a long recession. According to market researcher IHS on Monday, global sales of flat panel TVs fell 6.3 percent in July compared to the same month last year to 14.88 million units.
The Korean market is even worse as it suffered its first sales drop in 10 years, but with a vengeance. Sales of TV sets plunged 30.4 percent in the first eight months of this year, down to 1.53 million from the same period last year.
The world's largest TV maker Samsung and second LG are no exception.
One reason is that this is a year when neither the Olympic Games nor the football World Cup are held, since they happen in alternate even years.
Prices are plummeting and eating into profits. The success of a TV business for the year can be gauged in the second quarter because TV makers introduce new models in March, so, the average TV price goes up afterwards.
The year 2010 saw new 3D TVs appear, and the average price for flat panel TVs rose by US$24 to $575 in the second quarter. Smart TVs were introduced in 2011, and consumers willingly opened their wallets, with the price rising $35.
But this year, the average price fell in the second quarter. Consumers see no model innovative enough to persuade them to shell out in straitened times.
But some believe things will improve in the long term. As the next year is an even year with the World Cup in Brazil, conditions are already looking better, and the economies of Europe and the U.S. are showing signs of recovery.