Global Shipments of LCD TVs Increase by 1.6% in 2016

Figures released by WitsView, a division of TrendForce, show that global shipments of LCD TV sets for 2016 increased 1.6% percent annually to reach 219.2 million units. Shipment growth was attributed to the strong sales in North America’s distribution channels and the increasing affordability of large-size TVs coupled with the robust housing market in China.

The top five TV brands in order by shipments were Samsung, LG, Hisense, TCL and Sony. Samsung and LG had shipments of 47.9 million and 28.2 million TV sets respectively. A WitsView spokesman commented that Samsung posted flat annual growth for 2016 as it experienced shortages for mid-size panels throughout the year. Also, Samsung’s TV set shipments were affected by the earthquake in southern Taiwan in February 2016. Issues also arose with Samsung Display from their adoption of Black Column Spacer technology.

LG registered a 4.1% annual decline in its shipments mainly because of the change in the brand’s strategic priority from increasing shipments to raising product margins and controlling its inventory level.

China’s Hisense and TCL took the third and fourth spot in the annual ranking by increasing their shipments 3.9% and 0.8% respectively, reaching 13.3 million and 13.2 million units.

Sony ranked fifth in annual shipments with 11.7 million units, down 3.7% from 2015. It is believed that Sony’s target market will still be large-size TV sets for the high-end segment and the introduction of OLED TVs with advanced in-house video and audio technologies.

For 2017, the market dynamics will be influenced by the closure of SDC’s L7-1 fab and Sharp’s decision to not use its Gen-10 plant to supply other first-tier brands. WitsView expects that TV makers will increasingly focus on developing and promoting higher-margin products such as models featuring large 4K displays. Consequently, the average size of TV sets will expand significantly as well.

WitsView’s latest analysis forecasts global LCD TV shipments for 2017 at 225 million units, an increase of 2.6% from 2016. Models sized 50-inch and larger will make up nearly 30% of total shipments for this year, while the share of UHD-resolution products in total shipments will reach 31.5%. The high-end segment will be a highly contested area for major brands. Samsung has recently launched its Quantum Dot TVs to compete against LG’s OLED products. From the design perspective, bezel-less and detachable models are some of the novel concepts that the market can expect this year in addition to ultra slim models.

TVSales 2016