Retail in Asia

In Trends

Report: HK consumers spent USD26m in audio home system in 2011, GfK Hong Kong

When it comes to getting an audio home system, increasing number of households in Hong Kong do not seem to mind shelling out big bucks for top of the range technology. GfK Hong Kong’s retail audit of the Audio Home System (AHS) sector showed tremendous two-fold growth in unit sales and 58 percent value increment in the more sophisticated, higher end 5.1 Home Theatre System with blu-ray segment, which is also the only key steering force behind the positive performance of the AHS sector in 2011.

GfK retail audit of AHS covers Home Theatre 5.1, 4.1, 2.1 and 2.0, as well as micro, mini and midi systems. The latest report comparing 2011 and 2010 sector performance in Hong Kong revealed a 5 percent expansion last year in the overall value, derived from sales of approximately 97,000 sets of audio home systems. Over a quarter (27 percent) of the devices sold were blu-ray equipped, making up nearly half (47 percent) of entire AHS sales.

"Demand for blu-ray technology has been escalating as discerning consumers are becoming more appreciative of the value that it brings. We are witnessing a high level of switchover among Hong Kong consumers to audio home systems with blu-ray capability, evident from the steadily rising monthly sales in the second half of last year, which closed in December with volume sales of blu-ray devices outpacing non blu-ray ones at 54 percent," commented Walter Leung, general manager of GfK Hong Kong.

With increasing widespread acceptance, the number of blu-ray devices available in the market has also expanded last year as manufacturers jumped on the bandwagon to cash in on this fast emerging new technology. Of the total number of AHS products available in Hong Kong last year, 55 models were equipped with blu-ray technology, as compared to only 39 a year ago.

"Sales of Home Theatre Systems 5.1 with blu-ray grew by leaps and bounds as consumers had a wide variety of over 47 models to choose from, some at greatly reduced rates as manufacturers actively ran promotions to encourage sales," observed Leung. "For instance, prices of older models were slashed when new ones were being introduced, which led to the average price of Home Theatre Systems 5.1 with blu-ray being eroded by 24 percent within a year."

"Blu-ray technology will continue evolving and proliferating to replace the non blu-ray devices in order to cater to the higher demand and living standards of today’s affluent consumers. For some consumers, nothing beats the sharp, perfectly clear image projected by a blu-ray disc viewed on a good high definition television!" he concluded.

Other AHS segments tracked by GfK Asia which registered growth last year was the midi, mini, and micro systems which reported 47, 28, and 4 percent growth respectively.