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CEA: DTV sales are soaring - Broadcasting & Cable

CEA: DTV sales are soaring

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According to the Consumer Electronics Association, July sales to dealers of
"DTV products" -- a combination of integrated sets (including tuners) and
monitors -- were up 81 percent to 213,159 units from July 2001. The average
price was $1,733 for a total dollar figure of $369,311,697.

Due to Federal Trade Commission rules regarding equipment produced by a
limited number of companies, the CEA does not break out totals for monitors versus
integrated tuners (TVs that can actually receive and decode a broadcast digital-TV
signal).

Set-top-box sales for the first seven months of the year totaled 44,291 units
at an average price of $499. That's way down from the 79,101 units sold in the
same period in 2001.

CEA president Gary Shapiro attributed the drop-off to "Americans waiting for
more compelling high-definition content."

The CEA has been criticized in Washington, D.C., for not ramping up integrated-set
production.

The trade group has countered that the additional expense is a penalty consumers
shouldn't have to pay when content providers have not stepped up to the plate
with HD programming worth the additional cost.

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