DAB radio is set to be rolled out in Australia later this year and according to GFK sales could be slow to start with. In the UK the DAB Market has grown by 18% in the last year, with 2.1 million units sold in the year ending March 2008, resulting in cumulative DAB sales of just under 7 million units according to GFK.
Given the average price declines that have been seen across the DAB market (-8%) in the latest year, value growth has not been as strong, however an increase of 8% was still registered in that time period, pushing total DAB market value to $341 million over the last 12 months.
Three key sectors continue to drive DAB sales. Clock Radio, Portable Radio and Audio Systems account for 13%, 38% and 40% respectively of DAB value in the latest year. Clock Radio has been the fastest growing sector and is up by 68% in value. Within the total Clock Radio market, DAB has had a significant impact with DAB products increasing from 14% to 19% of total sales in the last two years and to just under a quarter of units in the latest month.
The higher value associated with a DAB product is evident in the value proportion which has risen to over 50% in March. The average price of an analogue Clock Radio in March was $32 compared to $114 for a DAB Clock Radio. With prices falling swiftly in the portable radio DAB sector (a March 2007 vs. March 2008 decline of 23% in average price), the price difference of a DAB set compared to an analogue set was below $70 compared to $43 in the latest month. This has helped increase the proportion of Portable Radios which are DAB to 60% and there have also been increases in Audio Systems where DAB now represents 23% of both Micro and Mini Systems.
Within Audio Systems there is also another growth sector, namely Audio Servers/Clients and Streamers. These are products which can offer hard disc drive storage of music as well as the wireless transmission of audio signals and are increasingly popular in the UK. $26 million was spent on these products in the latest year which is a sizeable growth on the $16million spent in the Y/E March 2007. There is also a reasonable average price of $657 attached to these products in March.
For overall Audio Systems Internet sales represent 8% of the market value in the latest year, but it is evident that online sales of Audio Server/Client products have a much greater significance than in the traditional market (10% of all Audio Systems compared to only 4%). This may well be because the online price is more than $204 cheaper than other retail.