Well, at least he’s being honest—Best Buy CEO Brad Anderson announced at CES today that the 2009 switchover from analog to digital television (still a year away) poses “one of the biggest risks our industry has,” whatever that means. “The number of converter boxes that is going to be required could put tremendous pressure on us.” Oh, you mean because you’ll have to have them in stock? Interpretation: if you’re going to need a converter box or two, you’d better plan on buying them elsewhere.
Target and Circuit City, on the other hand, were acting almost as if they’re in the business of consumer electronics and looking forward to the transition as a selling opportunity. Weird.
Executives with Circuit City and Target agreed the digital TV transition is fraught with challenges.
But the transition presents opportunities as well, says Steve Eastman, vice president and general merchandising manager for consumer electronics at Target. The analog-to-digital switch will get people thinking about high definition and what technology is in their homes, he says.
Target plans to have converter boxes in stores by April.