Euro consumers go for smart TVs

Buyers of TV sets in the UK, France, Germany and Italy are increasingly looking for connected TVs with bigger screens, according to comparison site Idealo.

Using user data from more than eight million clicks across four European online markets, Idealo analysed the TV preferences of consumers over the previous 15 months (Q4 2011 to Q4 2012).

The findings: 3D technology, large screens and a high degree of connectivity were in demand, with models by Samsung dominating. Idealo is a website, where consumers can compare products.

Manufacturer-Click-Distribution-Pie-ChartIdealo’s statistics show that Samsung, Philips, LG, Sony and Panasonic accounted for 84.7% of clicks – with Samsung substantially ahead with a 41.9% share, followed by Philips with 17.1% and LG with 12.4% respectively.

“Samsung’s popularity stems from the manufacturer offering a wide selection of products to suit all customer requirements and budgets. Furthermore, they set themselves apart via their design and high level of innovation“ said Idealo spokesperson, Christoph Hitchen.

Idealo click statistics show that TVs with models with a screen size of 42 inch or larger are increasing in popularity from 38.8% in Q4 2011 to 54.1% in Q4 2012, which can in large part be attributed to models in the 50-55 inch screen size segment.

The evolution towards larger models perhaps partly being explained by affordability with average prices of the largest models decreasing, despite improved specifications.

It remains to be seen, however, how quickly large displays fitted with latest display technologies become firmly embedded into the mainstream. Hitchen sees the development as follows: “The OLED und Ultra-HD technologies showcased during the CES exhibitions in 2012 and 2013 are still hindered by enormous production costs – the soon to be released 55 inch OLED TV from LG for instance has an RRP of €7,800. It would be recommended to wait one or two years until the prices have reached more affordable levels.”

Idealo user behaviour confirms a consistent increase in interest in 3D-capable devices. Indeed in the fourth quarter of 2012, 68% of clicks generated in Idealo’s TV category were attributed to 3D-ready models – markedly higher than the European average.

Hitchen offers the following explanation: “E-commerce offers manufacturers the opportunity to test the uptake of new technologies. As early as 2011, the majority of Idealo users searching for TVs were looking to compare prices on high-end models.”

Internet-Enabled-TVThe trend for smart TVs is reflected by Idealo data with more than 80% of available TVs in the final quarter of 2012 offering internet connectivity; most popular among these being an integrated web browser, Wi-Fi and on-demand streaming from broadcasters.