Outlook gloomy for electronics growth, research firm says

By Elizabeth Tchii  /  STAFF REPORTER

Wed, Jul 30, 2008 - Page 12

The Market Intelligence Center (MIC, 資訊市場情報中心) yesterday predicted a decrease in global consumer electronics growth for the second half of the year because of recent oil price hikes and the effects of the US subprime crisis.

The prospects seem dim for order placements for downstream technology companies, except for digital cameras, camera phones, Blu-Ray DVD players and digital TV set-up boxes, an analyst said yesterday.

Sagitta Pan (潘健光), senior industry analyst at MIC, said that digital camera shipments in the second half of the year would reach 29.26 million units from 21.14 million units for the first half, a year-on-year growth figure of 3.5 percent.

Shipments for camera phones are likely to grow compared to last year. Big orders from Apple and HTC mean this year’s annual shipment could reach 240 million units, he said.

Starting in the third quarter, Taiwanese manufacturers will produce Blu-Ray DVD players. However, DVD monopoly players such as Sony, HLDS, TSST and Panasonic have hampered Taiwanese manufacturers’ ability to increase their market shares, he said. Hence, Pan said he believes there will be fewer Taiwanese manufacturers in the DVD market.

The US Congress has mandated all-digital television broadcasting, in a move known as the digital television transition. Because of this, shipments for digital terrestrial setup boxes are anticipated to double this year.

The world’s portable navigation device (PND) market has been dampened by high inflation. In the first half of this year, domestic PND manufacturers shipped 9.08 million units, marking a year-on-year growth of 35 percent. Shipments in the second half are anticipated to hit 16.11 million units.

Pan also said that there is a great deal of competition between PND devices and smart phone devices with GPS capabilities.

Western Europe and North America experienced flat PND growth in the first half of this year. MIC forecasts worldwide PND shipment growth of 35.4 percent year-on-year this year with an anticipated 43.3 million units in shipment.

However, MIC yesterday lowered its growth forecast for next year to 28.2 percent, or 55.5 million units.