We’ve analysed the latest GfK market data to bring you the winners and losers in the UK tech market.
CONSUMER ELECTRONICS DIP
The market was down 21 per cent in value year-on-year in July 2013, which GfK says was still due to the strong sporting summer months of 2012, when TV sales rose 43 per cent.
This year in July, the TV market dipped 24 per cent in value, while camcorders fell 45 per cent and total audio dropped 13 per cent.
However, sound bars continued to sell strongly with 135 per cent value growth. Plus, turntables and extra large TV screens are showing potential.
"Apart from the tough comparison points with last year, consumer electronics still suffers from high ownership levels among customers and the lack of visible technological innovation. In addition to this, low consumer confidence and a turbulent economy isn’t helping to encourage the purchase of non-essential items," said GfK’s Anja Kraus.
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TOUCH-SCREEN PHONES DOMINATE
Mobile phones with touch-screens reached a high of nearly three quarters of the mobile handset market in July 2013.
While almost 95 per cent of the contract market consists of touch-screen-only phones, the majority of pre-pay and SIM-free phones have non-touch screens. Sales in the SIM-free market nearly doubled in July, which GfK says is thanks to the growth of touch-screens in the mobile sector.
GfK’s Hussein Elshebani said: "The growth of touchscreen phones within the contract market is mainly driven by the mid-to-high end segment. However, as smartphones in general move down the price points we see increased penetration of touch-screens in the pre-pay and SIM-free markets. As a consequence, traditional feature phones experience significant declines year-on-year."
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IT MARKET DECLINES AS TABLETS SHINE
The IT Retail market suffered year-on-year declines of 7.1 per cent and 6.6 per cent in volume and value respectively.
Media tablets’ growth rates reached 59.2 per cent in terms of unit sales, while in terms of value the growth rates reached 17.1 per cent.
MONITORS AND NETWORKING PRODUCTS RISE
Monitor sales rose 5.2 per cent and 5.9 per cent in volume and value respectively in July.
Meanwhile, communication devices (covering all networking products) grew 6.8 per cent in volume and 1.7 per cent in value year-on-year, with docking stations, repeaters and switches all performing well.
"These growths are indicative of the increasing prominence of cloud computing," said GfK’s Robyn Tovey.
"One of the main reasons for the [monitor] growth is the increased affordability of high resolution and high viewing angle models. Given the continuing growth of the media tablet category, we expect MHL (Mobile High-Definition Link) to become a key feature in the monitors retail market. An MHL port allows consumers to broadcast the display of their tablet and smartphone devices; an innovation that could spell further danger for the traditional computing form factors."
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