If you are looking for signs of Pro AV sector being re-animated, here’s data from PMA Research (which does guess what) suggesting commercial flat panel demand has ticked up.
The market research firm’s sales tracking report on large-format flat panel displays sold in the North American Pro AV channel were up substantially, monthly and year on year.
There are several interesting bits of data in there, such as how the most sales come out of 55s but the real margins are in the big fellas, like 86-inch displays, and how most of the interactive display demand is coming from schools, not workplaces.
March sales of large-format flat panel displays through the North American Pro AV channel continued to grow as unit sales soared 50% and revenues jumped 40% over February.
Year-over-year, March unit sales grew 28% and revenues grew 14%. The year over year comparisons were partially bolstered by the pandemic shutdowns that took place in the latter half of March 2020 which dampened sales that month.
The first quarter of 2021 finished about 8% ahead of first quarter 2020 in both volume and revenues. This is notable for two reasons. First, the growth came as the U.S. struggled with rising COVID cases but made significant progress with the vaccine rollout. It is also important to note that the first quarter of 2020 was an exceptionally strong quarter with revenues up over 25% from 1Q2019.
There were some notable product segment trends in March within the Pro AV channel. 55-inch displays remained the most popular display size and accounted for nearly 30% of unit sales and more than 20% of the revenues. By comparison, 86-inch displays accounted for nearly the same revenue share as the 55-inch models, but with less than 10% of the total volume share.
For Direct-View LED Videowalls, the channel almost doubled last month’s total and revenues for the quarter came close to doubling 1Q 2020 revenues.
Finally, one fourth of the total unit volume in March was for interactive displays. At least 85% of this volume went into K-12 education. Unit sales of interactive displays targeted toward enterprise installations doubled in March versus February. These UCC displays and accessories are among the most important technology tools businesses need for hybrid work solutions. These tools will continue to provide essential functionality as enterprise adapts to a new normal.