A new study issued by Futuresource Consulting (whose team of analysts includes Carl Hibbert, pictured) indicates that 60% of all home audio shipments across the USA, Western Europe and Japan will feature networking connectivity by 2014.
This represents a dramatic increase from the 10% figure forecast for the present years, and further confirms impressions of networking as a significant growth area.
As more consumers embrace online options, packaged music sales are slowing, although revenues of $14 billion are expected for 2011 once final figures are in – more than doubling online sales of $6 billion. Through to 2015, forecasts show that online growth cannot offset the decline in packaged media.
With regard to hardware, speaker docks dominate home audio shipments with expectations for this segment to account for almost 60% of the market in 2011. As iPod sales reach maturity, demand for dedicated speaker docks will follow a similar path.
Conversely, iPhone and iPad sales are still on the rise and fuelling a demand for speakers with networking capabilities. Subscription services and internet radio are driving more interest in networking, while the inclusion of Wi-Fi enabled devices means that consumers can stream music directly through installed apps rather than rely on embedded technology.
Source: Futuresource Consulting