Home Networks research company Parks Associates has delivered a damning verdict to PC based suppliers of media servers, with a survey which shows that US families are looking to buy such a device from CE brands like Sony, Panasonic or Pioneer, and not from Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard or Gateway.
Over 70 per cent of households which already have broadband lines picked out consumer electronics brands, over their PC counterparts, in Parks Associates' Broadband Networked Households project. Over a half of them (51%) picked Sony as their brand of choice for any device, which would store and distribute content to networked devices within the home.
“With unit sales flattening, PC OEMs hope digital consumer electronics will be their next big opportunity,” said Michael Greeson, vice president of research and strategy for Parks “Yet it is far from certain that a PC leader such as HP or Dell can cross over to consumer electronics and compete with the likes of Sony. The CE players have been selling dependable and inexpensive devices for decades, and consumers will gravitate toward category-specific brands due to positive prior experiences. This ingrained brand preference will be hard to break.”
Parks Associates' most recent consumer research initiative, Broadband Networked Households, features data collected from a survey conducted in Q4 2003 of more than 3,300 broadband households.
The company is also preparing to launch Consumers & Emerging Multimedia Platforms, a Q1 2004 primary research project designed to examine consumer perceptions of reliability, brand preference, feature sets, and applications unique to these media platforms.
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