Make us your home page
Instagram

3-D TV sets' sales have yet to take off

Klarysa Clark, 15, of Eagle Rock, Calif., checks out a Samsung 3-D TV at the Atwater Village Best Buy, where two 3-D television sets are on display. Though Clark was impressed, industry analysts say 3-D TV sales have been surprisingly low.

JAY L. CLENDENIN | Los Angeles Times/MCT

Klarysa Clark, 15, of Eagle Rock, Calif., checks out a Samsung 3-D TV at the Atwater Village Best Buy, where two 3-D television sets are on display. Though Clark was impressed, industry analysts say 3-D TV sales have been surprisingly low.

LOS ANGELES — Barely settled into their first home together, Arman Galstyan and Carolyn Kaloostian were itching to buy a new television to go along with it.

But the Glendale, Calif., couple were not about to settle for just any big-screen, HD flat-panel TV. It had to be 3-D.

"We had been wanting to get it, and when we heard they came out, we didn't even let a chance for competition to bring the prices down," said Kaloostian, 27, as her fiance paid the cashier at a Best Buy in Los Angeles.

That's just what television manufacturers, who began rolling out a new generation of 3-D-capable sets amid much hype early this year, want to hear.

But the first sales figures on 3-D TVs and a newly released consumer survey indicate the industry has a long way to go before the new technology catches on in a big way, if it ever does.

In the sets' first three months on the market, starting in February, consumers nationwide spent about $55 million on 3-D-capable TVs and related equipment, according to an NPD Group survey of some of the largest retailers carrying the products.

Paul Gagnon, an analyst with DisplaySearch, said about 20,000 sets were sold by those major retailers. Approximately 7 million TVs overall were shipped to retailers around that time frame, according to the Consumer Electronics Association trade group.

Similarly, a Parks Associates study released last week showed that despite the success of several recent 3-D movies, awareness of the home technology is middling, even in the tech-savvy 18-to-34 age group.

"We don't see a large percentage of people going out of their way to go buy a new TV just because of 3-D," said Parks analyst Pietro Macchiarella, who said he had not expected only 13 percent of the people surveyed this quarter to describe themselves as "familiar" with 3-D TVs.

"I think it's a little bit of a surprise," Macchiarella said.

Despite the hype, only a tiny amount of 3-D content is available for the home screen. That's changing, slowly. Currently, World Cup soccer matches can be viewed in 3-D by DirecTV and Comcast cable subscribers.

Sports could be a key factor for many consumers.

"It'll be cool to have basketball in 3-D," said George Preciado, 33, a Los Angeles resident who said he has made four trips to different stores to look at sets.

Preciado's also a gamer, which could make him a more likely candidate to buy a set as more 3-D video games become available.

3-D TV sets' sales have yet to take off 06/29/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, June 29, 2010 8:14pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Los Angeles Times.
    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Tampa is 15th-most popular city to move to with U-Haul

    Markets

    TAMPA —Tampa is undoubtedly a destination point, at least according to U-Haul.

    Tampa is the No. 15 destination for people moving with U-Haul trucks. | Times file photo
  2. Florida's economy growing faster than other big states and far better than U.S. overall

    Business

    When it comes to economic growth, Florida's running alongside the leading states and well ahead of the United States as a whole.

  3. Westshore Marina District project takes shape with another acquisition

    Real Estate

    TAMPA — One of Tampa Bay's prime waterfront areas took another major step toward redevelopment Friday as WCI Communities bought 2.35 acres in Westshore Marina District.

    WCI Communities, Lennar's high-end subsidiary,has paid $2.5 million for 2.35 acres in the Westshore Marina District for 35 townhomes. WCI is under contract  to buy an additional 9.5 acres.
[BTI Partners]
  4. Posh Guy Harvey RV park to open in Tampa Bay with $250,000 cottages

    Business

    HOLIDAY — Love those Guy Harvey T-shirts with the soaring marlins? In the not too distant future, you might be able to kick back in your own Guy Harvey cottage in the first-ever Guy Harvey RV park.

    Renderings of the clubhouse and an RV cottage site of the planned Guy Harvey Outpost Club & Resort Tarpon Springs.
[Guy Harvey Outpost Collection]
  5. Port Tampa Bay secures $9 million grant to deepen Big Bend Channel

    Business

    Port Tampa Bay has secured a $9 million grant from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the widening and deepening of the Big Bend Channel in southern Hillsborough County.