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Living Room Hardware - US - January 2015

“Having become acclimated to a touch-based and cloud-oriented experience on tablets and smartphones, consumers are expected to yearn for a similar experience in their living room. The industry is supplying that experience in spades.”
– Billy Hulkower, Senior Technology and Media Analyst

This report answers the following questions:

  • Can television sales survive cord-cutting?
  • How many smart products does a living room require?

Living room hardware is in a transition phase, as 4K televisions become mainstream purchases, as video content is increasingly accessed via the internet, as streaming media players replace shiny discs, and as TV Everywhere replaces local DVR storage. In this rare moment in which so many new technologies are converging inside the home, hardware manufacturers have a critical opportunity in which to either re-establish their prominence, or to reverse sliding share. The transition also harbingers renewal at electronics retailers recognizing that consumers and the industry are at last moving in synch toward the adoption of new products. Within this context, this report explores the entertainment-oriented hardware that consumers own, plan to buy, and how they use them.

This report explores ownership, purchasing, and usage of television sets and complementing audio/video equipment, include shiny disc players, streaming media players, and home theater audio. Computers (including tablets) and gaming consoles are examined in the competitive context with streaming media players, smart televisions, and shiny disc players. Equipment provided by cable and satellite companies, including DVRs, for use with their service is excluded by the report.


About a third of adults examine sets even when they are not looking for one. When the shopper looks at the price paid for their last television set, and compares it to newer sets available, the newer sets shine. Each month that a purchase is delayed, the price of the new sets become more and more of a bargain, until the household can afford a much larger screen, or a much higher resolution screen, at a price perceived as reasonable because they paid a similar fee for their last television. The upside to this powerful system is that the average household buys a television every 2.5 years. The downside is that if price declines on television sets ever slow, the entire industry is imperilled.

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Table of contents

  1. Scope and Themes

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
        • Data sources
          • Sales data
            • Consumer survey data
              • Abbreviations and terms
                • Abbreviations
                  • Terms
                  • Executive Summary

                      • The market
                        • Television sales reach $38 billion
                          • Figure 1: Total US retail sales and forecast of televisions, at current prices, 2009-19
                        • PC market exceeds TV market
                          • Figure 2: Total US retail sales of PCs, tablets and peripherals, at current prices, 2009-14
                        • Turnaround in average price paid for televisions
                          • Figure 3: Price paid on most recently purchased television, October 2009-June 2014
                        • Consolidation hits television brands
                          • Figure 4: Brand of most recently acquired television, November 2013-June 2014
                        • The consumer
                          • Intent to purchase A/V more limited than TVs
                            • Figure 5: Intent to purchase TVs and A/V hardware, September 2014
                          • 25-44s, higher-income groups, Asians spend more
                            • Figure 6: Price paid on most recently purchased television, selected demographics, November 2013-June 2014
                          • What we think
                          • Issues and Insights

                              • Can television sales survive cord-cutting?
                                • The issues
                                  • The implications
                                    • How many smart products does a living room require?
                                      • The issues
                                        • The implications
                                        • Trend Applications

                                            • Trend: The Suite Life
                                              • Trend: Click and Connect
                                                • Mintel Futures Trend: Human
                                                • Television Sales

                                                  • Key points
                                                    • Sales nearly flat
                                                        • Figure 7: Total US retail sales and forecast of televisions, at current prices, 2009-19
                                                        • Figure 8: Total US retail sales and forecast of televisions, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2009-19
                                                      • Fan chart forecast
                                                          • Figure 9: Fan chart and forecast of US retail sales of televisions, 2009-19
                                                      • Competitive Context

                                                        • Key points
                                                          • PCs versus TVs and A/V
                                                            • Historical growth in PCs may hold potential for TVs
                                                              • Figure 10: Total US retail sales of PCs, tablets and peripherals, at current prices, 2009-14
                                                            • Rising ownership
                                                              • Figure 11: PC ownership, October 2009-June 2014
                                                              • Figure 12: Number of PCs owned, October 2009-June 2014
                                                              • Figure 13: Number of TVs owned, October 2009-June 2014
                                                            • Gaming consoles
                                                              • Figure 14: Total US retail sales of gaming consoles, at current prices, 2009-14
                                                          • Market Drivers

                                                            • Key points
                                                              • Widespread interest in varied distribution formats promote integration
                                                                • Figure 15: Usage of and interest in video distribution channels, September 2014
                                                              • 4K content
                                                                • Streaming video
                                                                  • Figure 16: Digital movie stores and subscription services used in past month, June 2014
                                                                  • Figure 17: Number of DVDs/Blu-rays bought or rented in past three months, July 2009-March 2014
                                                                • Age, income driving purchase cycle, spend on TV sets
                                                                  • Figure 18: Time since most recently purchased television, by age, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                  • Figure 19: Time since most recently purchased television, by household income, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                • Age, income driving spend
                                                                  • Figure 20: Price paid on most recently purchased television, by age, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                  • Figure 21: Price paid on most recently purchased television, by household income, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                • Price declines
                                                                  • Difficulty with installation
                                                                    • Figure 22: Difficulty setting up entertainment systems, by selected demographics, September 2014
                                                                  • Rising screen size impacts A/V equipment, usage
                                                                    • Figure 23: Screen size of most recently purchased television, October 2009-June 2014
                                                                • Leading Companies

                                                                  • Key points
                                                                    • Consolidation
                                                                        • Figure 24: Brand of most recently acquired television, October 2009-June 2014
                                                                    • Marketing Strategies

                                                                      • Key points
                                                                        • Marketing for televisions
                                                                          • 4K in focus: Together we stand
                                                                            • Samsung
                                                                                • Figure 25: Samsung TV ad, “Coliseum”, May 2014
                                                                              • Panasonic
                                                                                • Figure 26: Panasonic TV ad, “4K Solutions”, June 2014
                                                                              • Vizio
                                                                                • Figure 27: Vizio TV ad, “What is smart”, October 2013
                                                                              • LG
                                                                                • Marketing for streaming media players
                                                                                  • Roku
                                                                                    • Figure 28: Confusion over streaming media sticks/boxes, September 2014
                                                                                  • Google Chromecast
                                                                                    • Figure 29: Google Chromecast “For bigger joy” television ad, August 2014
                                                                                  • Slingbox
                                                                                    • Marketing for home theater audio
                                                                                      • Bose
                                                                                      • Innovations and Innovators

                                                                                        • Cornering 4K content
                                                                                          • Providing content to all
                                                                                            • Voice controls that work
                                                                                              • Delivering an integrated user experience with search and discovery
                                                                                                • TWC partners with Fan TV
                                                                                                  • New apps leverage smart TV’s unique attributes
                                                                                                    • Gaming moves to center stage with new streaming players
                                                                                                      • 3D from Ultra-D and Dolby
                                                                                                        • Figure 30: Interest in glasses-free 3D, by selected demographics, September 2014
                                                                                                      • Curves
                                                                                                      • Ownership

                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                          • Universal television ownership
                                                                                                              • Figure 31: Household hardware ownership, by age, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                            • Rising tide in Blu-ray
                                                                                                              • Figure 32: DVR, Blu-ray, and 3DTV ownership, October 2009-June 2014
                                                                                                              • Figure 33: Interest in glasses-free 3D, by gender and age, September 2014
                                                                                                            • Screen size an economic decision
                                                                                                              • Figure 34: Screen size of most recently purchased television, by household income, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                              • Figure 35: 3DTV ownership, by household income, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                            • Living room remains center of playback
                                                                                                              • Figure 36: CE ownership by room, September 2014
                                                                                                            • Households with children ahead of curve
                                                                                                              • Figure 37: Living room hardware ownership, by presence of children in household, September 2014
                                                                                                              • Figure 38: Living room hardware ownership, by gender and age, September 2014
                                                                                                              • Figure 39: Living room hardware ownership, by household income, September 2014
                                                                                                          • Purchasing

                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                              • Rising spend on televisions
                                                                                                                • Figure 40: Price paid on most recently purchased television, October 2009-June 2014
                                                                                                              • Intent to purchase
                                                                                                                • Intent to purchase A/V more limited than TVs
                                                                                                                  • Figure 41: Intent to purchase TVs and A/V equipment, September 2014
                                                                                                                • Checking televisions out at retail
                                                                                                                  • Figure 42: Television shopping behavior, by age, September 2014
                                                                                                                • Young men, household with kids have highest levels of intent
                                                                                                                  • Figure 43: Intent to purchase TVs and A/V hardware, by age, September 2014
                                                                                                                  • Figure 44: Intent to purchase TVs and A/V hardware, by gender and age, September 2014
                                                                                                                  • Figure 45: Intent to purchase TVs and A/V hardware, by presence of children in household, September 2014
                                                                                                                • Rise of the web for research and for purchasing
                                                                                                                    • Figure 46: Online research and shopping for televisions, by age, September 2014
                                                                                                                    • Figure 47: Online research and shopping for televisions, by gender and age, September 2014
                                                                                                                    • Figure 48: Online research and shopping for televisions, by household income, September 2014
                                                                                                                    • Figure 49: Online research and shopping for televisions, by presence of children in household, September 2014
                                                                                                                • The Viewing Experience

                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                    • Binging
                                                                                                                      • Figure 50: Binging, by age, September 2014
                                                                                                                      • Figure 51: Binging, by gender and age, September 2014
                                                                                                                    • Second screening
                                                                                                                      • Figure 52: Second screening, by age, September 2014
                                                                                                                      • Figure 53: Second screening, by gender and age, September 2014
                                                                                                                      • Figure 54: Second screening, by presence of children in household, September 2014
                                                                                                                    • Role of audio
                                                                                                                      • Figure 55: Interest in high-end audio, by age, September 2014
                                                                                                                      • Figure 56: Interest in high-end audio, by gender and age, September 2014
                                                                                                                      • Figure 57: Interest in high-end audio, by presence of children in household, September 2014
                                                                                                                    • The bedroom versus the living room
                                                                                                                      • Figure 58: Communal viewership and bedroom viewership, by age, September 2014
                                                                                                                      • Figure 59: Communal viewership and bedroom viewership, by household income, September 2014
                                                                                                                      • Figure 60: Communal viewership and bedroom viewership, by presence of children in household, September 2014
                                                                                                                  • Activities and Connectivity

                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                      • Supporting data
                                                                                                                        • Figure 61: Current usage of and interest in trying activities on a television, September 2014
                                                                                                                        • Figure 62: Internet connectivity via televisions and A/V equipment, by age, September 2014
                                                                                                                        • Figure 63: Internet connectivity via televisions and A/V equipment, by household income, September 2014
                                                                                                                        • Figure 64: Internet connectivity via televisions and A/V equipment, by presence of children in household, September 2014
                                                                                                                        • Figure 65: Interest in new activities on a television screen, by age, September 2014
                                                                                                                        • Figure 66: Interest in new activities on a television screen, by gender and age, September 2014
                                                                                                                    • Impact of Race/Hispanic Origin

                                                                                                                      • Asians overindex on spend
                                                                                                                        • Supporting data
                                                                                                                          • Figure 67: Household hardware ownership, by race and Hispanic origin, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 68: Price of most recently purchased television, by race and Hispanic origin, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 69: Brand of most recently purchased television, by race and Hispanic origin, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 70: Difficulty setting up entertainment systems, by race and Hispanic origin, September 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 71: Interest in glasses-free 3D, by race and Hispanic origin, September 2014
                                                                                                                      • Appendix – Other Useful Consumer Tables

                                                                                                                        • Difficulty with installation
                                                                                                                          • Figure 72: Difficulty setting up entertainment systems, by age, September 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 73: Difficulty setting up entertainment systems, by gender and age, September 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 74: Difficulty setting up entertainment systems, by household income, September 2014
                                                                                                                        • Household hardware ownership
                                                                                                                          • Figure 75: Household hardware ownership, by marital status and presence of children, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 76: Screen size of most recently purchased television, by age, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 77: Screen size of most recently purchased television, by race and Hispanic origin, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 78: 3DTV ownership, by race and Hispanic origin, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 79: 3DTV ownership, by age, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 80: 3DTV ownership, by marital status with children, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                        • Online research and shopping for televisions
                                                                                                                          • Figure 81: Online research and shopping for televisions, by race and Hispanic origin, September 2014
                                                                                                                        • Price paid on most recently purchased television
                                                                                                                          • Figure 82: Price paid on most recently purchased television, by marital status with children, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 83: Intent to purchase TVs and A/V hardware, by household income, September 2014
                                                                                                                        • Intent to purchase
                                                                                                                          • Figure 84: Intent to purchase TVs and A/V hardware, by race and Hispanic origin, September 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 85: Intent to purchase shiny disc players, by age, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 86: Intent to purchase shiny disc players, by household income, November 2013-June 2014
                                                                                                                        • Communal viewership and bedroom viewership
                                                                                                                          • Figure 87: Communal viewership and bedroom viewership, by race and Hispanic origin, September 2014
                                                                                                                          • Figure 88: Communal viewership and bedroom viewership, by gender and age, September 2014
                                                                                                                      • Appendix – Trade Associations

                                                                                                                        Companies Covered

                                                                                                                        • Amazon North America
                                                                                                                        • Blockbuster USA
                                                                                                                        • CinemaNow, Inc
                                                                                                                        • Consumer Electronics Association
                                                                                                                        • Emerson Electric Co.
                                                                                                                        • Experian
                                                                                                                        • Google, Inc.
                                                                                                                        • JVC Americas Corp.
                                                                                                                        • LG Electronics Inc (USA)
                                                                                                                        • Microsoft Corporation
                                                                                                                        • Netflix, Inc.
                                                                                                                        • Panasonic Corporation of North America
                                                                                                                        • Philips Consumer Electronics North America
                                                                                                                        • Redbox Automated Retail, LLC
                                                                                                                        • Samsung Electronics (USA)
                                                                                                                        • Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd
                                                                                                                        • Sony Corporation of America
                                                                                                                        • Toshiba Corporation (USA)
                                                                                                                        • Verizon Communications Inc.
                                                                                                                        • Vizio, Inc.
                                                                                                                        • Walmart Stores (USA)

                                                                                                                        Living Room Hardware - US - January 2015

                                                                                                                        £3,199.84 (Excl.Tax)