Smartphones and HDTVs are the top consumer-electronics (CE) products U.S. households plan to purchase during the next 12 months, according to a new study released by the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). 

Phones will be the most purchased CE device this year, with CEA’s report showing 22 percent of U.S. households saying they plan to purchase such a device in the next 12 months. HDTVs (17 percent) and digital cameras (15 percent) are next on the list.

In addition, mobile computing is important, with 14 percent of households surveyed saying they will be buying tablet computers and notebook/laptop computers soon.

Tablet computers also were a leading growth category over the past 12 months, CEA notes. U.S. household penetration levels for tablets increased 14 percentage points from last year, representing the largest increase in the industry. Blu-ray players and digital media players also saw double-digit growth in household penetration numbers:

Households Purchasing This Year (%)
Increase From 2011 (%)
Tablet computers 22 14
Blu-ray players 26 12
Digital media players 19 11
Smartphones 46 7
Plasma flat-panel TVs 32 6
Internet-enabled TVs 9 6

As ownership rates for connected devices increases, more households are subscribing to video rental and streaming services, CEA says. Nearly 31 million U.S. households (26 percent) will be watching content streamed online, and growth will continue this year as 9 percent of new households are expected to subscribe to a video-rental and -streaming service this year.

Televisions remain the most commonly owned CE device, with 99 percent of U.S. households owning at least one TV; the average U.S. household owns 2.9 of the boxes. Nearly 70 percent of U.S. households report owning at least one HDTV, and more than half own at least one LCD TV. Approximately one-third (32 percent) report owning at least one plasma TV.

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