Average prices for LCD-TVs in the US rose from $1,136 in July compared to $1,060 the previous month, an increase of 7.2 percent, which was the highest increase in a year.
This was also a 2.8 percent increase on the same time last year, where the average price was $1,104. The price hike is seen as unusual, particularly considering declines in prices in May and June.
“While pricing often oscillates on a month-to-month basis, a year-over-year increase is unusual in the LCD-TV market, where annual price erosion rules due to falling panel costs and escalating competition,” said Riddhi Patel, director of television systems at iSuppli.
She revealed that the main reason for the increase is a myriad of new LCD-TV sets on the market, numbering over 20 per size range. Since most of these are superior to older models in features and functionalities they come with a higher price tag. At the same time, retailers are cutting back on deals designed to sell older models, instead focusing on pushing the newer ones, which also contributes to the average price increase.
A number of new technologies have fuelled growth in the LCD-TV market, in particular 3D and LED-backlighting. Several Internet TVs are also hitting the stores in anticipation of leading models from Google and Apple, fuelling consumer desire to fork out additional cash for these additional features.
However, the continuing economic uncertainty is hampering sales in this sector. With people losing jobs and getting pay cuts less and less can afford to buy a new TV, let alone a more expensive one with features that may be rarely used.
iSuppli believes that brands and retailers will need to aggressively promote the new ranges of LCD-TVs over the coming months to avail of the peak sales season in the lead up to Christmas. If prices continue to rise, however, this may be difficult to achieve.