Blu-ray is, obviously, never gonna come to the Mac platform, and I’m dubious that Apple will release its own television set — but, who knows on either count? Stranger things have happened.
ABI Research (http://www.abirsearch.co ) recently released the first part of its “Technology Barometer: Connected Home & Computing,” which surveyed 2024 consumers in the United States about the consumer electronic products in their households (device types and numbers), home networking, and purchase intent (device type, brand, and features critical to the purchase decision).
Among the significant top-line results, some 24% of the respondents indicated that their highest-priority purchases over the next six months would likely be of HDTVs (24%) and Blu-ray players (17%). About 60% of the households surveyed said they already have one HDTV.
“As consumers replace older TVs, there really isn’t much choice now but to buy an HDTV, so even if the consumer doesn’t necessarily want to view HDTV content, that’s usually what they end up with,” ABI Research senior analyst Michael Inouye says. “Prices for HDTVs have fallen quite a bit, and many households are now replacing their second- and third-string televisions.”
Video game consoles rated at the top of the wish-list for 16%. Forty-six percent of those surveyed said they had no major purchase intentions for the next six months.
In terms of “critical/very important” factors in planned purchases, price was either the most cited or second-most for most devices. For digital cameras, it was third (zoom range and megapixels were the top two in that category); for portable video game devices screen size and controls were the most critical factors, followed by price.
Price was also a lesser consideration in laptops, exceeded by processor speed, memory, storage capacity, and operating system (which bodes well for Apple). And perhaps counter to conventional assumptions, the survey showed that for media tablets price ranked only seventh in importance.
ABI Research practice director Jason Blackwell adds, “One surprising result in regard to media tablets was that Windows came in second after Apple, and ahead of Android. That probably has more to do with brand awareness than anything else, but it does give some hope to Microsoft.”
Maybe, but if I were Microsoft, I wouldn’t get my hopes up TOO much.
— Dennis Sellers