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News Analysis
Holidays Could Be Hell For TV Makers
By Swanni

Washington, D.C. (October 19, 2011) -- It's been a tough year for TV makers and a TVPredictions.com poll and other surveys suggest it could get even tougher this holiday season.

Asked if they planned to buy a HDTV this holiday season, 60.7 percent of our readers said no in an online poll taken here last week. Only 21.7 percent said yes while 17.6 percent said they weren't sure.

The dismal numbers follow an equally depressing survey result last week from the Ipsos organization. The company found that 45 percent of consumers plan to spend less this year compared to the 2010 holiday season. Only 11 percent said they would spend more.

While the survey did not specifically address consumers' plans for HDTVs and CE products, the overall numbers would suggest that people will keep a tight grip on their wallets this year.

Of course, for TV makers, this is just an additional topping of bad news. Thanks to the sluggish economy -- and consumers' lukewarm reception to new 3D TVs -- sales of new HDTVs have been flat this year. In the first quarter, sales of LCD sets even fell, albeit by 3.5 percent.

TV makers, and their CE retail partners, have been hoping that the holiday season would help turn the year around. But if the surveys reflect reality, that may not happen.

Consequently, I think you'll see TV makers slash prices even further than expected during the holiday shopping season. And, if they are smart, they will continue to downplay the 3D features of new sets and focus instead on how great the HD picture is.

Almost 18 percent of our survey respondents said they are not sure if they will buy a new set this holiday season; the TV makers better give them a good reason why they should.

What do you think? Offer your comments below!

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