Economic downturn can strain consumer trends, or alternatively throw them into high gear. After an initial environment where the former occured, now the latter seems to be gradually gaining ground. Following an estimated 7.7 percent decline in revenues between 2008 and 2009, to $165 billion, the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) forecasts a slight uptick (0.6%) in 2010, to $166 billion in revenues. One new product that Americans will be buying, along with the continual increase of HDTVs and DVR services, are Internet-enabled televisions (IETVs). While Americans are not going to be watching more YouTube on their TVs than broadcast television, the amount of television as well as Internet video that they view are both increasing.
Digital Convergence is one significant trend in consumer electronics functionality. Such devices are designed to do more than the single essential function that they were initially introduced to the market to perform, and are increasingly expected to multitask.
Just how much both of these activities are increasing is quantified in eMarketer calculations of a report from The Nielsen Company. Watching online video ranged between one and two percent of Internet users' overall monthly video consumption, while TV takes up 98.5 percent of all TV/video viewers' time. But the rates of increase for the second quarter of 2009 showed a 2.4 percent increase in watching TV, a 57.9 percent increase in timeshifted TV, and Internet video 62.7 percent increase.
Home networks have been upgraded from data-centric to multimedia-centric, because of an increase in popularity of digital entertainment. The proliferation of broadband Internet has helped this upgrade on a worldwide level. In response to that, El Sugundo, CA-based electronics marketing analysts iSuppli Corporation predicts that shipments of Internet-video-capable consumer electronics will increase by nearly 500 percent from 80.5 million units in 2008 to 376.5 million units in 2013.