Hey, you! Need a new smartphone? Or how about an e-reader? No? You’re all stocked up on electronics gadgets? Hmm. And here we have all these nifty devices to try to convince you that you absolutely must have. What’s a 2013 Consumer Electronics Show exhibitor to do? It seems this year’s CES is kind of a snoozefest because we’ve had most of our itch for electronics scratched by products already on the market. And that market, it’s a-saturated.
CES has kicked off in Las Vegas to show 150,000 people what’s up next in the world of gadgetry, but because some big names are missing from the roll call — Microsoft, Apple as per usual, Google, Amazon — QZ.com notes that there’s already less of a hubbub at the show. Combine that with the fact that other tech companies aren’t making as big of a deal out of their exhibits and you’ve got one big yawn.
But why? Don’t we all love, covet and depend on our shiny electronics? Well, yes, says market research company NPD. That’s exactly the problem as NPD puts it in a recent survey — “68% of consumers are happy with the technology they have now.” We’re sated. Chock full of electronic wonder, at least for now.
NPD’s survey also found that only one in 10 people admitted to being unable to leave the house without their Internet-enabled devices. We’re connected in so many ways both at home and on the go that we don’t need to be tied to any one device anymore.
“Consumers are buying less [consumer electronics] because what they have today serves their needs, and the promise of what we are offering tomorrow is of very little interest to them,” writes NPD vice president Stephen Baker. He also asserts that revenue is not increasing for companies that make consumer electronics because users are simply buying less of the stuff.
All of our needs have been met, or close to it, and unless new problems crop up for technology companies to address, any “new” gadgets won’t be seen as necessary to consumers. It’s also getting tougher in the global economy for the average person to always be on the hunt for newer and better devices. In other words, if it ain’t broke, don’t spend the little extra cash you have to replace it.