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A/V Market is in a Major Stage of Transition

Adoption of networking technologies will make installed home theaters and multi-room audio systems more affordable, opening up this market to more consumers at low-to-medium income levels, according to the latest study by Parks Associates.

Total U.S. revenues for installed home theaters and multiroom audio systems will grow from $6 billion in 2007 to more than $11 billion by 2012, and analysts forecast the number of new installations to grow 67 percent over the same period, from 166,000 per year in 2007 to 277,000 by 2012.

The high-end A/V market is in a major stage of transition. Digital media content is approaching the performance and quality of analog media, with the added flexibility only digital content offers.

Reduced costs coupled with advancements in wireless and powerline networking technologies are also growing the retrofit portion of the market, at a time when mid-market construction is slowing down.

Soon, according to the Parks' assessment, PC-based systems from companies such as Dell, HP, and Cisco will compete for customers who traditionally purchased systems from JBL, Sony, and Yamaha.

Currently, the majority of high-end A/V customers are wealthy. In addition, most installed entertainment systems are sold into new homes or homes going through a major renovation. This mix will change as builders, installers, and integrators become more accepting of no-new-wires technologies.

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