No wonder Gerry Harvey and pals are desperately looking for new fields to plough: sales in dollar terms of digital lifestyle products sold in Australia in the second half of 2010 experienced their most significant decline in eight years, according to the just released Canon Consumer Digital Lifestyle Index for 2H 2010.
In the six months to December 2010 Australians bought 8 million digital devices at a total value of $3.6 billion, according to Canon. For the full year Aussie spent $6.8 billion on nearly 15 million digital gadgets, Canon says.The good news is that the averagew price of goods fell 13%.
Overall units sales also failed to show any growth H2 2010, remaining steady compared with the same period last year.
Looking on the bright side, Canon says this means consumers are experiencing “unprecedented levels of affordability” – they’re paying less for similar products.
And there seems no doubt the net result is tougher times for retailers.
Only six out of the 13 Canon index categories posted a year-on-year increase – though five of these six categories recorded double-digit volume growth.
Personal video recorders and PCs led the way, with unit growth of 25 percent and 24 percent respectively. They were followed closely by LCD TVs (+18 percent) and digital still cameras (+14 percent).
In plasma TVs, unit sales of full HD panels grew by 39 percent. Canon says 3D-TVs now comprise 16 percent of the total plasma market by value, and predicts further momentum as the amount of 3D content increases.
That conclusion may have been made before last week’s revelation by Ovum that Aussie TV broadcasters are unimpressed by 3D-TV, rating production of 3D content and channels as their lowest investment priority and “not an important business consideration”