Consumer electronics sales: euphoria gives way to uncertainty

With a decline of 15% in the third quarter recorded by IDC on October 10, is the lean period back for the PC market? At a minimum, it’s a hard landing. Like many consumer electronics sectors, during the period of measures to combat the Covid-19 pandemic, this one experienced a period of euphoria, with households massively equipping themselves, which for work, who for distance education. Logically, demand is less strong today.

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Thus, Jonathan Angel, Marketing Director Europe Consumer PC at Asus, notes that after two years with growth “exceptional” 10% per year, “We are witnessing a return to normal with “flat” sales”. Same feeling in the world of television. “We are in a depressed market”admits Jean-Yves Fabre-Darcourt, general manager of TP Vision France. Industry players are hoping that the FIFA World Cup, which kicks off on November 20 in Qatar, will correct the trend somewhat, as sporting events have traditionally boosted sales.

The movement seems to be accelerating. At the end of August, the GFK firm only anticipated a drop of 10.4% for the IT and office automation sector. With inflation settling in for a long time, a still unfavorable euro-dollar exchange rate, protracted semiconductor supply problems, difficulties are mounting. The smartphone market is not spared, which recorded a decline of 9% year-on-year, according to a report from the firm Counterpoint published on August 24.

The lever of sobriety

However, some players continue to take advantage of the new lifestyles that have emerged with the Covid-19 crisis. With the presence at home which is getting longer, investments are continuing to equip their accommodation as well as possible and, if possible, to embellish it. This is reflected in particular by the maintenance of sales in large household appliances, which, despite a slight decline in volume (− 5%), remain constant in value, according to the Gfk firm. Explanation: customers are moving towards more upscale and more decorative products, says Samsung, which has just launched a more “lifestyle” brand, Bespoke.

The robot vacuum market is also booming, with an estimated growth of 25%, according to the ReportLinker site. Moreover, in a world where teleworking is becoming more and more essential, “consumers tend to confuse professional and private use of devices”IDC notes. What the Korean manufacturer LG has understood, for example, whose curved screen, presented at the beginning of September at the IFA exhibition in Berlin, devoted to consumer electronics, can be used both for work and for an immersive experience for video game enthusiasts.

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