Worldwide TV shipments fell slightly more than expected in the first quarter of 2017, declining 4.7 percent to 46.7 million units as slowing price erosion led to a weakening consumer demand, according to research firm IHS Markit.
Despite this, the growth in average screen size continues to be strong rising four percent, to just over 42 inches. The growth in larger-size categories comes as a result of the average selling price (ASP) decline in large sizes, such as 55- and 65-inch, into more affordable price ranges.
?Consumers are responding very favorably to large price drops in key large-screen size categories, such as 55-inch 4K, which fell from more than $900 a year ago to less than $700 in the first quarter of 2017,? said Paul Gagnon, director of TV sets research at IHS Markit.
Gagnon added, ?The average price for 65-inch 4K has dropped even more significantly in a year, by $450 to almost $1300, although regional demand for these larger sizes is focused in the US and China.?
55-inch-and-larger screen size share grew to more than 22 percent of units in Q1 2017, up from 16 percent quarter-over-quarter. The 55-inch-and-larger share was highest in China and North America accounting for 36 percent and 30 percent, respectively, of TV shipments in Q1 2017.
The concentration of 65-inch-and-larger shipments in China and North America is even more dramatic, with the two regions accounting for 70 percent of all 65-inch-and-larger TV shipments.
South Korean TV brands Samsung and LG combined for 35 percent of global unit shipments in Q1 2017, and an even higher 42 percent of revenues. These figures are up slightly from a year ago, and reflect stable positions in most regions.
Several Chinese TV brands have gained significant share in key markets, which poses a disruption to existing market dynamics. Foxconn, which purchased Sharp in 2016 and sells Sharp-branded TVs in worldwide except in North America and Latin America, has strong growth plans for 2017.
Key to that will be growth in China, and in Q1 2017, Sharp shipment share grew to nearly seven percent from less than three percent in 2016, with strong sales of 45-inch and 60-inch screen sizes.
TCL has been targeting overseas sales growth for several years in an effort to diversify regional sources of demand away from China. In the North America region, TCL partnered with Roku for Roku TV smart TV models, which helped boost TCL?s unit share to 13 percent in Q1 2017, from four percent in 2016. This places TCL as the No. 3 brand in North America during Q1?17 on a unit basis, and No. 5 on a revenue basis.