Flat panel TVs have a big future

Over the last 12-months large flat screen TV sales have risen by an amazing 182% with the average flat panel set to reach 60-inches.

It seems the trend towards buying ever larger flat panel TVs has continued to grow at a remarkable rate in 2007 with the future of the "average" flat panel TV in European homes set to reach 60-inches according to Sharp and recent the market analyst's Gfk Group flat panel TV market data.

From the press release:

Pride of place in any living room, the TV has become an integral part of the 21st Century lifestyle. Recent Gfk data* has revealed that large flat screen sales have risen by 182% year-on-year. This is also supported by Japanese manufacturer Sharp who believe that, by 2015, the average size of a LCD TV in a European home will be 60-in. So it seems for TV hungry Brits, size really does matter.

In the last 12 months, sales of 46 inches and above LCDs have rocketed to a staggering 272%, suggesting big screen TVs are becoming a permanent feature in the home. This is also backed up by other big screen sizes with sales of 40-42 inch TVs increasing 128% and sales of 37-in screens rising by a whopping 308%1.

Tommaso Monetto, Sharp product manager AQUOS LCD TV, said: "The growth in the popularity of larger screen TVs is underlined by the fact that last year our most popular range was the 42-in.
Although we have seen a growth in sales of 46% in this range since January 2006, this has now been eclipsed by the 46-in range in 2007 - sales of which have shot up a whopping 150%."

So what is driving this desire for bigger being better? Mike Gabriel, head of marketing and communications for Sharp Electronics (UK) Ltd, said: "With the onset of the digital switchover, there is an increasing desire to harness the technology available on the high street. More and more people are seeking to make the most out of their digital TV's potential and are using new technology available to do this. Developments such as High-Definition (HD) broadcasts and Blu-ray technology are allowing people to sit close up to their TV screens and experience cinematic quality in the comfort of their own living room.

"Big screens are no longer for just shop windows or shiny office receptions. The demand for HD-ready 1080p picture quality in the home has led to an increase in both the affordability and availability of larger TVs. People can now expect a home cinema experience from their TV and technology that was once associated with the rich and famous is now accessible to homes across the country.

"At Sharp, our intensive research and development over the past five years has seen the growth of larger, slimmer LCD TVs for the home that have improved picture quality and energy efficiency. With living space at a premium, our 42 inch range of AQUOS TVs have been designed to occupy the same space as its 37" predecessor once stood. People no longer have to compromise on space or quality; this is why our range of TVs at 42 inches and above is growing."

(* Taken from Gfk Group, Retail and Technology CE & LCD update October 2007).