Local News

Consumers Get Ready for New Home Electronics

Posted January 7, 1999

— A booming economy and Americans' interest in gadgets and electronics has us buying more consumer electronics.

TheInternational Consumer Electronics Showis under way in Las Vegas showing off the new products that will soon be in stores.

The Consumer Electronics Association predicts American sales this year of $79 billion, a five percent increase over last year.

The association says the average American household spends $1,000 a year on consumer electronics, twice as much as on furniture or toys.

Some fascinating things are on the horizon, and one of the hottest is high definition television.

More than 90,000 people are checking out all the new products that will soon be available to us.

New generation wireless telephones, in-carDVDplayers, and tiny but feature-packed digital video camcorders are just a few of the new consumer products.

Home networked computers are also big news fromCisco Systemsand other companies.

But perhaps the biggest news is a wide range of new digital television receivers, including wide screen HDTV models.

There are ultra-thin plasma displays and rear projection models up to 70 inches. HDTV receivers are in production and are pricey.

"Like any new technology, high definition television is going to be a bit premier priced. But as time goes on, it's like all consumer products, the prices tend to come down rather rapidly," said Jim Palumbo ofSony.

With dozens of digital stations now broadcasting, includingWRAL-HD, more people are seeing and hearing the superior quality of HDTV.

HDTV sets in Las Vegas, in Raleigh and around the country will carry the first everNFL playoffgame in high definition Sunday.

CBSwill broadcast the Jacksonville Jaguars vs. New York Jets game beginning at 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

It can been seen on WRAL-HD on channel 32. Several store demonstrations are planned in our area at Now Audio and Video, Circuit City and Kelly's in Fayetteville.


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