Cost of TV sets drops significantly in Asia

MUMBAI: Consumer technology prices in Asia dropped significantly between 2003 and 2004 despite recent concerns about increases in commodities prices used to manufacture these goods.

GfK Asia has released its 2004 Pan Asian Consumer Technology Price Index.

Australians experienced the greatest drop in consumer technology prices. The figures indicate a 26 per cent decline in average price for 29" flat screen TV, a 36 per cent decline in the average cost for 42" plasma TVs and a 42 per cent decline in average price for 3 mp digital cameras between 2003 and 2004.

Hong Kong, China and Singapore all showed significant dips in average prices particularly in 32" plasma TVs, 3 mp digital cameras and mobile phones. Mobile phone prices in the region are showing the steepest decrease in average price with a 36 per cent drop across the region between 2003 and 2004.

As far as 32" LCD TVs are concerned, Taiwan experienced the most notable drop with a 2003 average price of $4,603 moving to an average price of $2,130 in 2004. This represents a 54 per cent decline.

GfK Asia MD Andy Drake said, "Our figures indicate that despite the recent rise in commodities prices, these increases are not being passed onto the consumer. In fact, what we are seeing is that consumer technology prices are steadily declining across all product categories surveyed over the Pan Asian Region."

Citing economies of scale as one explanation for this phenomenon Drake added, "While the drop in consumer prices may raise red flags for manufactures, the increase in commodities prices is likely being offset by the robust growth in sales volumes throughout Asia."

GfK Asia is part of the global GfK Group. The research company has over 15 years' experience in providing reliable Asian retail and technology market data. Its analysts track a broad range of consumer technology markets, including: consumer electronics, telecom, IT, household electrical appliances (large and small) as well as digital imaging.

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