Consumer Electronics Accessories to Exceed $11 Billion

Changes in consumer behavior and new product introductions are driving the consumer electronics (CE) accessories market forward, according to a study released by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA(R)). CE Accessories Market: Insights and Opportunities examines accessory product ownership, consumers’ intent to buy and the purchase process for CE accessories. CEA has forecasted that the total CE accessories market will grow 11 percent in 2007, exceeding the growth rate of the overall industry.

“The MP3 player is the perfect example of a new product that fueled an explosion of attachment products,” said Tim Herbert, senior director of market research for CEA. “Changes in consumer behavior can have an even bigger impact, however. Consumers now conduct business or manage their personal lives anywhere at anytime. This has created an entire class of accessory products designed to enhance and support this “on-the-go” lifestyle. Products such as Bluetooth headsets, portable Flash storage and portable speakers for MP3 players are examples of accessories created as a result of these changes.”

Accessory buyers spent an average of 15 percent of the cost of the primary CE device on accessories in 2006. Many of those purchases were made for the purpose of enhancing the functionality or performance of their primary device. For the most part, consumers consider their accessories to be necessities, whether they are using them for listening, connecting, powering or protecting.

The study also found that 82 percent of accessories buyers make their purchase some time after their primary CE purchase. Various reasons include having adequate time to determine what the needs are, growing attached to the product and wanting to protect it, or upcoming travel plans that require an accessory that will enable them to take their device on the road.

“Manufacturers and retailers must continue to build demand for their products by educating consumers about the enhanced functionality and performance of their devices through accessories,” said Herbert. “With the right mix of accessories, customers are more satisfied with their purchase and are less likely to return products.”

The CE Accessories Market: Insights and Opportunities (March, 2007) was conducted between December 19 and 23rd, 2006. It was designed and formulated by CEA Market Research, the most comprehensive source of sales data, forecasts, consumer research and historical trends for the consumer electronics industry. Please cite any information to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA (R)). The complete study is available free to CEA member companies. Non-members may purchase the study for $599.

About CEA
The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) is the preeminent trade association promoting growth in the consumer technology industry through technology policy, events, research, promotion and the fostering of business and strategic relationships. CEA represents more than 2,100 corporate members involved in the design, development, manufacturing, distribution and integration of audio, video, mobile electronics, wireless and landline communications, information technology, digital imaging, home networking, multimedia and accessory products, as well as related services that are sold through consumer channels. Combined, CEA’s members account for more than $140 billion in annual sales. CEA’s resources are available online, the definitive source for information about the consumer electronics industry.

CEA also sponsors and manages the International CES – Defining Tomorrow’s Technology. All profits from CES are reinvested into industry services, including technical training and education, industry promotion, engineering standards development, market research and legislative advocacy.