Flat screen TV demand deepens across Southeast Asia

Joseph O'Halloran | 22-01-2013

New research from GfK has found that evolution and innovation in TV technology have driven a surge in demand for flat panel screens across Southeast Asia in 2012, leading to over 8.3 million unit sales and reflecting a 26% volume growth.
In Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia, GfK identified a 10-70% uptick in sales of LCD sets, the most sought-after TV type across the region, making up more than nine out of ten sets purchased by Southeast Asian consumers. The research also found that Indonesia was the largest and also fastest growing market, with a particularly high rate of conversion from the traditional CRT TV. GfK believes that nearly 2.9 million sets of LCD TVs were sold in January to November 2012, an increase of 68% compared with a year earlier.

Yet other markets showed a growing preference for more advanced candidate flat screen technologies. Just over three-quarters (77%) of all flat panel TVs sold in Singapore were LED TVs with the rest being Plasma TVs.
“The total LCD TV market across the region increased by 13% over last year, spurred largely by the strong demand of LED TVs which contributed to a significant chunk of the LCD TV pie,” explained Gerard Tan, account director for digital technology, GfK Asia. “The developing countries are getting more exposed to the advantages of this newer TV technology and its consumers are increasingly demanding for it. Consumers in the region are willing to splurge on TVs, having spent over $2 billion on LCD TVs last year, 13% more compared with the year before.”
The analyst attributed the strong sales growth to drivers such as greater affordability due to price erosion attributed to keen competition among major brands, and the introduction of more advanced technologies such as Web TV and 3DTV capability. It calculated that just over a tenth (11%) of sets sold in the region over 2012 had a connected TV feature, while 3D was present in around 7% of all flat screen TV sales.
“The latest cutting-edge TV technologies introduced by major brands are the 4K and OLED TVs which received much attention during the recent Consumer Electronics Show,” added Tan, looking at future prospect for the market.
“However, with the current economic outlook in the region, consumers are likely to be exercising more caution in spending on big ticket items such as these upmarket TVs. Nevertheless, we foresee the overall TV market to continue remaining buoyant in 2013, attributable to the continued switchover process in the developing markets.”