Revenues from the sales of consumer electronics good are expected to
increase nine percent over 2004 during the upcoming holiday shopping
season – according to a survey by the Consumer Electronics Association.
CEA’s Annual Holiday Spending Survey tracks consumer electronics
devices consumers both intend to give and hope to receive. MP3
players topped both lists this year, with 57% saying they were likely
to purchase an MP3 player as a gift. Following the top MP3 players,
digital cameras and plasma displays (in order of preference) were
laptop PCs, big screen TVs, desktop PCs, video game systems, hi-def TV,
DVD recorders, and home theater speakers or complete systems.
Five Technologies to Watch – The CEA has released its 2006
edition of Five Technologies to Watch in the digital age. They
stood out as those most likely to make the biggest splash in the
consumer market in the year ahead, according to CEA president Gary
1. The ability to receive and record hi-def content at home, tied in with the coming new hi-def DVD formats.
2. Mass-market robotics, such as already seen in robot vacuum cleaners.
3. Do-It-Yourself digital content creation of stills and movies.
4. Advanced electronic gaming.
5. New hi-def TV display technologies beyond even the present plasma, DLP and plasma.
Sirius Satellite Radio First in Retail Market Share – According
to figures released by the NPD Group, Sirius Radio captured 56% of
satellite radio sales at retail in September, their highest share to
date. Over 82,000 tuners were sold in September, a 93% increase over
September of last year. Sirius delivers over 120 channels, including 65
of commercial-free music. Among the attractors for many new subscribers
are probably the Howard Stern and Martha Stewart shows scheduled to
begin in January.
Woman Battles the Recording Industry – Since the Recording
Industry Association of America (RIAA) has run into legal problems
using the courts to stop peer-to-peer downloading sites, they have
relentlessly gone after over 13,000 individuals across the country,
using sometimes thuggish methods to collect fines supposedly due for
illegally downloading music files. One example is Tanya Andersen, a
42-year-old single mother in Tualatin, Oregon. She first received
a letter from an LA law firm informing her she would be required to pay
$750 for each song she allegedly downloaded for free. They claimed she
did the dreaded downloading at 4 AM her time and the tracks were all
gangster rap. The problem is Mrs. Andersen can’t stand rap music and
she says she is never at her computer at 4 AM! She pleaded wit
the RIAA for understanding, citing: “There is no way it came from my
household.” But the RIAA was not dissuaded and continued to demand
thousands of dollars from Andersen, who cannot afford to pay to get
them off her back. Now an attorney has filed a lawsuit against the RIAA
under the RICO Act, a federal law traditionally employed to prosecute
mobsters. The suit alleges harassment, intimidation and electronic
trespass. If successful, the suit could stop the RIAA’s actions against
the 13,000 anonymous computer owners who currently have judgments
entered against them.