The industry may be doing a little extra belt tightening when it comes to overall HD television sales for the upcoming 2015 holiday shopping season, but you can expect to see the usual doorbuster specials and more 4K Ultra HDTV holiday packages this season, industry observers said.

International television business analysis director Paul Gagnon of IHS Technology told HD Guru that his firm is forecasting U.S. TV shipments to be roughly flat in the fourth quarter compared to last year, due to an apparent dearth in plans “for any aggressive promotions to match what we saw last year.”

“There might be a 1 percent bump in overall units shipped during the fourth quarter, but the third quarter shipments will be down slightly compared to the big surge in the third quarter a year ago,” Gagnon told us.

More on our Black Friday outlook after the jump:

As indicated in the IHS unit growth percentage change forecast chart at the top, IHS is, however, forecasting strong growth in 4K TV shipments to continue. The market research points out that pricing has continued to decline much faster for 4K than displays at other resolution levels, “so the adoption has exceeded forecasts through the first half of the year. We should see a number of attractive 4K TV promotions this holiday season, for sizes from 48 inches to 65 inches,” Gagnon said.

“While we expect the usual 32-inch promotions at, or under, $100, the bulk of the promotions will be 40-55 inches since this is the core of the growth in the U.S. market right now as people trade up. In fact, we are forecasting that 40-inch and larger shipments will be almost 13 percent year on year in Q4’15, while sizes under 40 inches will fall around 18 percent compared to last year,” said Gagnon.


As always, the TV price slashing is likely to be aggressive on certain items this Black Friday period, he said, although it might not be as broad based across model lines. Gagnon said this is due in part to the fact that “we have seen very large drops in LCD panel prices during the last two months, which come a little late to affect Black Friday deals. We believe promotions nearer to Christmas could be especially good because of these late key component cost reductions.”

So, word to the wise, it might just pay to wait until after Black Friday before making that purchase of a TV as a special present this year. Leading internet retailers would be a good place to check frequently over the course of the holiday shopping period for ever-changing bargains.

For example, Amazon revealed in recent days that it will be offering tens of thousands of deals on technology, toys and clothes between now and December 22. The list off goodies is sure to include TVs, projectors and digital cameras among other tech treasures the cyber-retailer will be showcasing this season.

Amazon, like a number of other retailers this year, is making Black Friday less of a focal point for season bargain hunters, opting instead to spread the savings out over a longer period of time both before and after the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.

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Like last year, Amazon began the 2015 Black Friday deal period the day after Halloween, but this year it is rewarding Amazon Prime members with a 30-minute head start on scooping up the best bargains before they’re gone. Prime members will now be able to access more than 30,000 planned sale items featured as Amazon’s Lightning Deals 30 minutes early as part of the new Prime Early Access policy, the e-commerce retailer said. The flash sales will be offered now through December 22.

Among some of the tech offerings Amazon has planned are the following:

  • 30 percent off the manufacturers suggested retail price for the Sony XBR55X900C 55-Inch 4K Ultra HD TV with a Blu-ray Player.
  • $170 off the Sony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital Camera with 16-50mm Power Zoom Lens
  • Jaybird’s X Sport Bluetooth headphones ($170 off);
  • Optima’s HD37 3D 1080p 2,600-lumen DLP home cinema projector (under $800).
  • Up to 50 percent off select Home Automation products.

Sears, meanwhile, opening its doors between 6 p.m. Thanksgiving Day through 2 a.m. Black Friday morning. They will then re-open at 5 a.m. Black Friday morning for round No. 2 of its doorbuster specials, before closing at 10 p.m. Friday evening.

The general merchandise chain will also offer other holiday incentives including integrated, cross-channel retail services, with the ability to pick up online orders placed with Sears or Kmart at either chain’s stores, and guaranteed curbside pick-ups and returns within five minutes or less.

Target is expected to open its doors on Thanksgiving offering limited quantities of doorbuster deals, including heavily discounted TVs, and other gadgets. The Target web site offers email reminders and the ability to receive real-time sales, shopping news, and stackable coupons as they’re released to the public.

Value Electronics, a specialty A/V retailer based in Scarsdale, N.Y., will be offering a number of deals on very large-screen TVs and high-performance video projectors for the holidays. Value Electronics will be offering some of its own exclusive deals on the most popular new projectors that were showcased at the recent CEDIA at special prices that can only be disclosed over the phone (914-723-3344) or via email ([email protected]), the company said.

Value will also be offering on Nov. 22-30 a number of hot deals on very large-screen flat-panel TVs from leading performance brands. Model pricing will be announced later and can be disclosed by calling the store at the number above. All of those big-screen holiday offers are subject to inventory on hand (some models are in short supply, according to Robert Zohn, Value Electronics proprietor and president.)

Black Friday big screen specials include the following:

  • Sony’s 75-inch XBR-75X850C 4K Ultra HD LED TV that accepts and displays high dynamic range (HDR) metadata and wide color gamut (WCG). Call for Black Friday sale price ($4,999.99 suggested retail price).
  • Samsung’s 78-inch UN78JU7500, 4K Ultra HDTV. Call for sale price.
  • Samsung’s 85-inch UN85JU7100, jumbo 4K Ultra HD. Call for Black Friday price ($8,999.99 suggested retail price).
  • Samsung’s 88-inch flagship 4K SUHD LED LCD TV model UN88JS9500 ($22,999.99 suggested retail), including Samsung’s Western Digital 4K Passport Cinema media server and a 32-inch TV bundled at no charge. This set will display HDR metadata and WCG. Call for Black Friday price.
  • Sony’s 65-inch 4K UHDTV XBR-65X850C offering HDR and WCG. Call for Black Friday price. ($3,499.99 suggested retail).

Walmart began its Holiday Savings Nov. 1, 2015, offering rollbacks that last at least 90 days on items ranging from groceries to popular TV brands including, Samsung. Walmart said it will have fewer “this weekend only” offers as it pushes the Rollback offers, including an RCA 48-inch Full HD 1080p LED Smart HDTV for $299.99.

Stay tuned to HD Guru for more Black Friday and holiday TV specials to follow.

By Greg Tarr


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