CES 2009: News Flash - Economy is down!

Wonder what LG, Toshiba, Sharp, Panasonic, Samsung and Sony all had in common at their press events yesterday? Besides launching new TV, Blu-ray players and describing Green initiatives to help save the planet, they all acknowledged the tough economy.

Throughout the day’s press conferences, we were continually reminded that the world’ markets have been posting a lot of red numbers lately. Comments like “we’re in the grip of global recession,” “it’s been a tough year,” “challenging economic times,” “market instability,” “staggering economic malaise,” and “the times in which we’re living” were heard throughout all of the 45 minute conferences. To bring a little levity to the potential doom-and-gloom, Toshiba’s Vice President of TV Marketing, Scott Ramirez, took the stage to REM’s “It’s the end of the world as we know it.”

Sharp gave some forecasted numbers of global LCD sales, which are expected to be down by 16% this year ($64 billion in 2009 versus $76 billion in 2008). However they expect to see sales rebound 10% to $70 billion by 2010.

Fortunately, the big six are all pressing forward making great new products, and with the digital switchover looming just days away, many out there will be looking to upgrade to newer technology.--John Sciacca