Oct. 20, 2012 at 4:43 PM ET
This year will go down as a very bad one for TV makers. Sony, Panasonic and Sharp posted huge financial losses, dragged down by lower worldwide demand due to the economic slowdowns in Europe and China.
The U.S. HDTV market has also been sluggish. Samsung, Sony and LG instituted Unilateral Pricing Programs on mid- to high-end models, requiring their dealers to charge the same price. This undoubtedly negatively affected sales. To counter, set makers employed a number of periodic promotions including instant rebates and/or bundles with free Blu-ray players or sound systems.
We at HD Guru consulted our industry contacts, surveyed the best current deals and checked last year’s Black Friday deals to come up with our Black Friday predictions. This year, Black Friday falls on Nov. 23, and will be the biggest shopping day of the year. We’ve listed the HDTVs by size, features and brand.
Before you buy a new HDTV, check out our 2012 list to make sure you are not going to pay more than you should have.
While 32 inches remains the best-selling screen size, the 39- to 42-inch class is closing in on sales volume. While inventories of these two classes are not too bloated, the hottest deals will be in the 55-inch and larger screen sizes as the big screens are not moving as fast as set makers projected.
This segment now has no-name brands competing with the legacy brands, with a number of new entries in the 55- and 60-inch size classes. Vizio just added a 70-inch TV to compete with Sharp, the only other maker of this screen class.
As in recent years, the online e-retailers will be very aggressive with their Black Friday deals and will follow with Cyber Monday deals on Nov. 26. According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, Best Buy plans to match Amazon and other retailers this holiday season, (with a few yet to be specified exceptions). This could be a game changer and really heat up the competition. We will follow up, once Best Buy’s holiday policies are released.
For those of you considering a Vizio or a no-name TV, please read our disposable TV article here. Thinking about an extended warranty? Learn how to get the best deal and how to get up to a one year extended for free here.
On to our list:
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