Worldwide projector market ends 2014 with Q4 up 3%

Almost every country witnessed a rise in projector sales in 2014, with volumes for the year up 8 per cent year-on-year to 8.3 million units, according to new data from Futuresource Consulting.

The market benefitted from several factors: strong promotional sales around the World Cup; increased demand for SVGA product (not only in developing countries but also in key established ones as the quality and connectivity of these models improve); significant growth in adoption of 1080P, both in the home and office (as an influx of new entry-level models cause the ASP to decline 17 per cent to just $1600) and the delivery of several large projects (namely in Mexico, MEA and China).

1080p sales attributed to 12 per cent of the market in 2014, up 3 per cent points from 2013 (a rise of 48 per cent in volume terms). However, the escalation of this resolution has been to the detriment of XGA, which lost 5 percentage points year-on-year, as it fails to remain relevant against falling prices of wider resolutions.

Q4 value was up 2.3 per cent to $2.7 billion driven by a trade-up in brightness levels across the world with the 3-3.5k lumen segment now representing 52 per cent of sales, compared to just 37 per cent in Q4 2013.

The EMEA projector market experienced significant growth in 2014 with volumes driven by several factors: strong promotional sales around the World Cup across multiple channel types; a resurgence in demand for SVGA (as the quality and connectivity of these models improve and economies across Southern Europe continue to recover) and a surge in adoption of 1080p product, both in the home and office.

The number of 1080p models on the market has increased 10 per cent over the year, with over 280 models now available. The majority of new models have entered at the entry-level of the market, leading to the ASP of a 1080p model dropping 20 per cent in Q4 year-on-year in Q4, to just $1256. This rapid reduction in price has caused demand to sore, with overall 2014 volumes up 61 per cent, to 369,000 units. 29% of 1080p sales in 2014 were for use in corporate applications with research indicating that increasing availability of HD content is driving sales, as well as familiarity with the resolution.

EMEA value was down by 2 per cent year-on-year in Q4, to $772 million due to the declines in WXGA and 1080p pricing. However, value for full year 2014 grew by 7 per cent, to $2.8 billion. The enduring trade-up in brightness can be largely attributed to this increase, with 3-3.5k lumens attributing to 49 per cent of the market in 2014 - compared to just 25 per cent during the previous year.

B2B short throw sales were down 3 per cent in Q4, with UK reporting a drop of 13 per cent year-on-year. The UK education market has been hit this year by increased demand for IFPD, with the display type being seen as a 'future-proofing' purchase, despite the price premium it incurs.

The projector market in APAC continues to grow with sales being driven by burgeoning demand in developing countries such as Indonesia and India. Improved distribution networks, coupled with increased government spend following national elections saw these countries grow 24 per cent and 2 per cent, respectively in Q4.

SVGA volumes continue to rise, up 26 per cent year-on-year to more than 200,000 units, as demand for entry-level product mounts - a reflection of improving economies across the region. The projector market in China, which attributes to 57% of the total region's sales, was down -1 per cent in Q4 to 491,000 units. However, this was largely due to a reduced demand for XGA product (down 11 per cent) as the resolution fails to remain relevant amid rapidly falling prices of WXGA and 1080p product and the quality of SVGA models improve. Volume sales of SVGA were up 19 per cent in China in Q4, with 1080p up by a staggering 40 per cent to 26,000 units - an influx of entry-level 1080p models has caused ASPs to decline 15 per cent year-on-year (to $1890) across the region creating a surge in demand for both home and corporate environments.

An increase in market value of 3.3 per cent in Q4 can be attributed, as in other regions across the world, to a trade-up in brightness levels with the 3-3.5k lumen segment now attributing to 48 per cent of sales (418,000 units) - compared to just 38 per cent in Q4 2013.

Growth in the Americas in Q4 was largely retained to Mexico, which saw volumes rise 38 per cent to 66,000 units. The country is benefiting from latent demand after a slow 2013 and a surge in education spend, with 2014 witnessing the delivery of significant projects.

The US market was up 1 per cent year-on-year in Q4, driven largely by sales of dedicated home product which was up 26 per cent. Declines in ASP of 1080P (of 19 per cent to $1325), as well as a very strong eretail channel, helped to grow sales. Growth in 1080p was also witnessed in Canada and Mexico, with the resolution now attributing to 15% of the region's total sales, up 3 per cent year-on-year. The rise in value can be largely attributed to an increase in adoption of Interactive B2B short throw product, and an increase in high brightness sales, sale of which were up 38 per cent and 4 per cent, respectively in Q4.