CEA Survey: HDTV Rising
"With seven million DTV products sold-to-date representing a $12 billion consumer investment, it is not surprising to find in this survey that consumers have become attracted to high-definition television's crystal clear viewing, superior audio and widescreen format," said CEA president and CEO Gary Shapiro, speaking October 14 in Carlsbad, CA at a CEA Industry Forum conference session on HDTV consumer awareness, sponsored by CEA's DTV Subdivision.
"More than half of all survey respondents said they view the HDTV transition as a positive. This supports our projections that millions more consumers will purchase an HDTV in the near future," Shapiro noted, adding, "[however,] hurdles remain. The survey also revealed a degree of consumer confusion remains regarding the transition, the technology and HDTV reception requirements." Areas of confusion include "products needed to view HDTV." For example, 74% of the survey's 1000+ randomly selected consumers did not know they often need a set-top box to watch HDTV shows; 78% did not know they need an HDTV-enabled recorder to record them; 54% don't know that not every program is broadcast in HDTV.
Plug'n'play capability will definitely improve the market penetration of HDTV, the survey implies, since 54% of respondents also said that being able to plug their cable line directly into a high-definition TV would make them more likely to buy an HDTV set. The most compelling HD content includes movies (38% of respondents), sports (21%), and educational or information programming (14%).
"We've definitely made progress on the overall HDTV education front as demonstrated by the fact that 85% of consumers now recognize that HDTV offers 'crystal clear pictures,'" Shapiro explained. "Additionally, key terms such as digital TV, high-definition TV and HDTV have all caught on with at least three out of five consumers. This is a marked improvement from the study CEA conducted two years ago." Shapiro called on broadcasters to "step up and deliver compelling programs." The CEA survey was conducted by telephone in September.