Blogs & Comment

Don't buy a TV until you read this

A friend of mine purchased a 32 Samsung LCD HD last summer for $800. It sells for $470 today.
Weve all experienced the frustration of buying something and then seeing the price drop afterward.
Statistics Canadatracks the consumer price index of video equipment, which includes TVs, DVD players, DVD recorders, digital camcorders, Blu Ray players and portable and non-portable video game consoles called collectively, consumer electronics.
The table below shows the consumer price index for this category of products on an annual basis.

Year 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009
CPI 120.8 116.3 111.4 103.9 100.0 94.9 86.5 81.4 72.9 66.2 60.1 54.5

Between 1998 and 2009, prices declined nearly 55%, meaning that a $1000 product in 1998 may have dropped to about $550 in 2009.
Between 2005 and 2009, the average electronics product dropped over 33% in price value. For example, a $2,000 product in 2005 might have cost $1,340 in 2009. Thats a savings of $660 the price you might pay today to get a product that was worth about $1,000 in 2000, according to Statistics Canadas index.
Though the statistics show that the price of the average electronics product drops 7% each year, we know that when it comes to the bigger-ticket items, like TVs, the price drops can be even more significant.
David Berman, director of training and public relations at Home Technology Specialists of America, says we can expect 3-D TVs to drop 15% by the holidays, so we should wait until December to make that purchase.
Plasmas have already dropped in price because their reputations are underrated, so now is a good time to buy one, Berman says.
LCDs and LED-lit TVs will drop in price as the technology matures and manufacturers become more efficient with production costs, says David Katzmaier, senior editor at CNET.
The price of LCD TVs will trickle down by Christmas, Katzmaier says, but the more expensive LED-lit TVs will have the greatest decrease. The difference between a 46 LCD and a 46 LED is about $400 or $500, Katzmaier says. Well see a big drop with LEDs, he says. Hold off until Christmas if its an LED that youre after.
If youre interested in an LED-lit TV because you think itll have a lighter impact on your hydro bill, think again, Katzmaier says. The difference in savings between one of the new 2010 plasmas and an LED would be about $40 per year, in the U.S., Katzmaier says, depending on location and usage.
Here are some examples of how prices in the TV market have fluctuated over time:
Sharp LCD TVs

Year Size Price
2002 10 $1,800
15 $3,000
20 $5,000
30 $18,000
December 26, 2005 20 $1,000
2010 19 $270

Source:Bill Friend, assistant VP, Consumer Products Division, Sharp Canada
Price =Manufacturers suggested retail price
Though a recent report from BIA / Kelsey Groupshows that 97% of todays consumers research products online before making purchases, I still think that a lot of people get sucked into purchases when they see things for sale whether online or in a store and make impulse buys.
Sometimes sale prices of one brands product are still more expensive than another brands regular price. Thats why limited time only sales can be quite sketchy.
When a product falls into the electronics category, it often has the shiny and new aspect. Its easy to fall in love with something that seems innovative and glamorous. Compared with dating, electronics shopping is similar. Our first love isnt always the best. Patience can be a virtue.
Black and White TVs

Year Make Size Price Image
1939 RCA 9 $450
1950 Philco 12 $500
1955 Admiral 21 $149
1970 Motorola 12 $89

Colour TVs

Year Make Size Price Image
1954 Westinghouse 15 $1,295
1970 Motorola 23 $600
1982 Sony 26 $1,200
1991 RCA 26 $660
1992 Philco 35 $2,300
1999 RCA 36 $1,400