Electronics manufacturing is shifting in a direction that responds to the latest trends in purchasing and using consumer electronics. Entertainment, health, and fitness are some of most popular uses of consumer electronics today, one of the largest segments in the manufacturing industry, particularly in emerging markets.
Consumer electronics growth
The consumer electronics that show high growth and are expected to hold immense potential in the future include smartphones, tablets, digital radios, 3D TVs, smart TVs, and HD DVD players/recorders.
In today's mobile world, smartphones have the highest near-term purchase intent in 2014 in the mobile connected device category, with 27 percent of consumers' preference, according to a Consumers Electronics Association (CEA) tracking study conducted in May 2014. The CEA researches and explores what the future holds for the consumer tech industry. The second place in near-term purchase intent goes to TVs with 20 percent of consumers, followed by laptops with 18 percent, and tablets with 16 percent. The smartwatch industry will triple by 2015, and fitness and tracking devices are estimated to grow by 60 percent.
According to the CEA, 85 percent of the purchases are conducted in-store. This reveals a preference for testing, touching, and playing with the device before buying. The study also revealed that the three main reasons for consumers to buy electronics are:
- To be entertained
- To make life more enjoyable
- To stay connected to the Internet
In the following video, the CEA explains what the future holds for the consumer tech industry:
Smartphones are consumers' preferred near-term purchase because they are easy to operate and ultra-portable for everyone. Even if the goal of carrying a smartphone is as a medical device, as is the case for an increasing number of patients, it's the mobile device of choice by the majority, so far.
What this means to electronics manufacturers
The current increase in the use of electronic devices in industries such as healthcare and the use of health and fitness applications by consumers are making electronics manufacturers shift their products' focus, adapting their production to better cater to health and fitness monitoring of individuals.
According to a PwC consumer electronics global technology scorecard, consumer electronics manufacturers like Royal Philips, Toshiba, and Sony have joined other companies in the consumer electronics segment and have started investing in the medical equipment category. The chart below shows the companies' revenue in millions of dollars from Q2 2010 to Q1 2014.
A glimpse into the future
According to “Global Consumer Electronics Market Outlook 2015” from RNCOS Market Research Reports, the global consumer electronics market is expected to grow at a CAGR of more than 10 percent from 2012 to 2015. According to the report, China is currently dominating in many segments of the global consumers electronics industry and is expected to surpass the US in total market by 2014. The report also shows that India is now the fastest growing consumer electronics market.
Taken together, the data above shows that the consumer electronics market is growing at an amazing rate, and everyone in the electronics business ecosystem should be prepared for what that means for his or her company.