CEA Projects 'Digital Holiday Season' With Increased Spending on Electronics, Gifts Overall

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Consumer spending on electronics gifts this holiday will reach an all-time high, according to new research released today from the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)(R). CEA's 18th Annual CE Holiday Purchase Patterns Study shows that overall spending this holiday will increase as well. The study was released today at CEA's Industry Forum in San Diego, a four-day conference designed to inform and connect leaders in the consumer electronics (CE) industry.

Consumer electronics (CE) are once again among the most desired gifts this holiday season and will account for one-third of all holiday gift spending. Consumers plan to spend on average $246 on electronics gifts, an increase of six percent from last year and the highest level since CEA began tracking holiday spending. Overall gift spending will also increase. Consumers plan to spend on average $769 on gifts this year, three percent higher than last year. CEA expects holiday retail sales to increase 2.5 percent this year.

"Consumer electronics continue to play a leading role in holiday shopping, with consumer tech clearly being a go-to category for holiday gift spending," said Shawn DuBravac, CEA's chief economist and director of research. "After months of depressed consumer confidence, individuals are indicating they plan to spend this holiday and are looking for technology, as more adults will buy consumer electronics as a gift this year as compared to last year."

Computing products will lead the way this holiday season. Tablet computers trail only clothes as the most wanted gifts overall. Notebook computers are also high on the list, along with peace/happiness and money. When it comes to electronics, behind tablets and laptops, TVs (any type), e-Readers and video game consoles are the most wanted CE gifts.

        
         Holiday Gift Wish List (Adults)  Holiday CE Gift Wish List (Adults)
        -------------------------------   ----------------------------------
                     Clothes                        Tablet Computer
                 Tablet Computer               Notebook/Laptop Computer
            Notebook/Laptop Computer                 TV (any type)
                 Peace/Happiness                       e-Reader
                      Money                       Video Game Console
        


Electronics accessories and gift cards will also be popular gifts this holiday. Four out of five adults plan to give a gift card this year, up five percent from last year, many of them for digital content and services. One in four consumers plans to give a gift card that can be used for digital music purchases, one in five for electronic book purchases and 16 percent for app purchases.

"It is going to be a computing holiday season, with tablets looking to be the run-away success story," said DuBravac. "New, innovative product categories like tablets and e-Readers, combined with consistent favorites like notebook computers, video game consoles and televisions, will make this a digital holiday season. But the economic landscape will have consumers searching for value, hunting for these technologies at attractive prices."

Price will be the most important factor as consumers decide where to buy their CE gifts. The ease of making a purchase and return policies are also important purchasing factors. Two-thirds of consumers will compare the price for electronics online before making a purchase. However, consumers are more likely to buy CE gifts at mass merchants and electronics stores than online or at warehouse clubs.

CEA will be releasing Black Friday sales figures during Thanksgiving weekend. To schedule an interview with a CEA analyst regarding Black Friday sales figures, contact Steve Kidera at skidera@CE.org.

The 18th Annual CE Holiday Purchase Pattern Study (October 2011) was conducted in September 2011. It was designed and formulated by CEA Market Research, the most comprehensive source of sales data, forecasts, consumer research and historical trends for the consumer electronics industry. Please cite any information to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA)(R). The complete report is available free to CEA member companies at members.CE.org. Non-members may purchase the report for $699 at the CEA Store.

CEA has also released the result from its 8th Annual Teen CE Holiday Purchase Patterns Study (October 2011) which examines CE wish lists, gifting intentions and holiday shopping patterns among teens ages 12 to 17. The report is available free to CEA member companies at members.CE.org. Non-members may purchase the report for $699 at the CEA Store.

About CEA:

The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) is the preeminent trade association promoting growth in the $190 billion U.S. consumer electronics industry. More than 2,000 companies enjoy the benefits of CEA membership, including legislative advocacy, market research, technical training and education, industry promotion, standards development and the fostering of business and strategic relationships. CEA also owns and produces the International CES -- The Global Stage for Innovation. All profits from CES are reinvested into CEA's industry services. Find CEA online at www.CE.org , www.DeclareInnovation.com and through social media; https://www.facebook.com/ #!/CEAfeed, http://twitter.com/ceafeed , http://blog.ce.org/ .

UPCOMING EVENTS

-- CEA Industry Forum October 23-26, 2011, San Diego, CA

-- CES New York Press Preview featuring CES Unveiled @ NY November 8, 2011, New York, NY

-- CES Unveiled @ London November 17, 2011, London, UK

-- Future of Television East November 18, 2011, New York, NY

-- 2012 International CES January 10-13, 2012, Las Vegas, NV

SOURCE: Consumer Electronics Association