Sony Launches 4K Ad Campaign
Sony has begun rolling out its marketing push for its new 4K HDTVs.
The first 30-second commercial features filmmaker Garth Davis, describing the rich, clearer, detail of the new models:
"The Sony 4K Ultra HD TV really is a new way of looking at things, a new visual language. There is so much detail, it's almost like you can walk into the picture," Davis said in a statement.
"One of the things unique to the TV is color. And the story we've been creating for this project is about celebrating color in lots of ways. With Sony 4K we are working at the highest end of technology and creativity."
The first models are available now at Sony's own stores as well as Best Buy and Magnolia.
Best Buy Posts $81 Million Loss
Best Buy's turnaround hasn't been without pain, as the retailer posted an $81 million loss for the first quarter. The number compares to a $158 million the same time the year before.
Best Buy spun the loss as "better than expected." The company is in the midst of its "Renew Blue" revitalization effort under new CEO Hubert Joly.
"As expected, first quarter Domestic comparable store sales were down 1.1%," July said in a statement. "This was the result of the Super Bowl shifting into last year's fourth quarter as well as our decision to reduce sales in certain non-core businesses. Excluding these impacts, Domestic comparable store sales were flat for the quarter despite no new major product launches and late deliveries in the smartphone category, and we delivered a better-than-expected non-GAAP diluted EPS of $0.32."
"Looking ahead, we remain focused on making progress on our Renew Blue priorities announced last November and reiterated in March," he continued. "During the second quarter, we will, in particular, complete the deployment of the Samsung Experience Shops and make significant progress in our efforts to optimize the allocation of our retail floor space to more attractive product categories, so as to increase revenue and operating profit per square foot."
Galaxy S4 Takes Top Consumer Reports Spot
Samsung's Galaxy S4 is the new top dog among smartphones, according to Consumer Reports.
The magazine said this week that the new phone has overtaken the LG Optimus G, which had held the top spot for most of this year.
In its announcement, Consumer Reports praised the S4's 5-inch, HD screen, its sensitive touch-screen display, and its multitasking capabilities.
hhgregg Profit Plunges
hhgregg Monday posted a $9.9 million profit for its fourth quarter, a big drop from the $53.6 million profit it posted the same quarter a year ago. The performance was ahead of analyst expectations, however.
Sales declined 2.6 percent year over year.
"We are very pleased with the progress we made throughout the quarter in appliances and the continued launch for new categories," CEO Dennis May said on the earnings call, according to a Seeking Alpha transcript. "However, we experienced challenging trends within consumer electronics, specifically the video category.
HTSA Adds Blair Home Technologies
The Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA) said Monday that Blair Home Technologies is its newest representative and nationwide member.
"Blair Home Technologies brings a truly unique flavor to both the CE marketplace and the HTSA membership as a whole, much which is a result of their ability to seamlessly blend specialty retail with cutting-edge custom integration," Bob Hana, Managing Director of HTSA, said as part of the announcement.
"As we look to enhance our reach and voice across the industry, we are thrilled to welcome likeminded members, and eager to join forces with both Blair and his team. Their presence will undoubtedly be a valued addition to our organization."
Dealerscope Retail Excellence Awards Are Now Accepting Submissions
It’s time again for Dealerscope’s Retail Excellence Awards, the search for the best CE and appliance retailers in the industry.
We’re asking for your help in identifying the retailers that have showed the most success and innovation during the last 12 months. We are looking for retailers that have a proven track record transitioning to connected solutions sales, adopting innovative e-commerce strategies, generating strong profits, creating successful online and in-store marketing campaigns, and delivering top-notch services. Any size retailer is eligible, whether it’s a one-store specialist, regional chain, e-tailer or mass merchant. If the retailer contributed to our industry, we want to share its story with the rest of the world!
We’ll feature the winners in a special Retail Excellence Awards section in the August issue of Dealerscope and on www.Dealerscope.com.
The nomination deadline is June 7. Submit your nominees at the awards website.
Study: Apple Stores Make $58 Per Visitor
Apple's retail stores make an average of $57.60 per visitor from the store, a record for Apple. That's according to a study released this week by Asymco.
The study also found that Apple showed a 7 percent growth in visitors in the most recent quarter. On a per-square-foot basis, Apple performed twice as well as Tiffany & Co., the second-highest retailer.
See the full study here.
CTPG Bookstore is Now Open
The Consumer Technology Publishing Group store is now open for business at store.ctpgonline.com.
We have books, ebooks and courses for sale from authors and industry groups including CEA, CEDIA and Bedrock Learning. Visit the bookstore today and discover the latest strategies for e-commerce, marketing and sales, retail strategy and more.
You can also catch up on new market research and training for electronic systems contractors on subjects like home networking, HDMI, and home theater design.
Capitol Offers New Panasonic Viera TVs
Capitol said this week that it is now offering Panasonic's 65” VIERA ST 65-inch ST60 Full HD plasma TV.
“We’re honored to bring one of the most eagerly awaited Panasonic TVs to our customers,” Capitol President and CFO Curt Hayes said as part of the announcement.
“Panasonic is the recognized leader in advanced HDTV for the home and PRO AV markets, and these new models offer an unbeatable combination of features and value, making them ideal for our dealers.”
Vizio Debuts New Home Theater Sound Bar
Vizio this week announced that its new 42" 5.1 Home Theater Sound Bar is now available. The product, featuring wireless subwoofer and satellite speakers, is available now at $329.99 at Amazon, Costco, Best Buy, Walmart and Vizio.com.
The product won CNET’s 2013 Best of CES Home Theater and Audio award.
The 5.1 Home Theater Sound Bar offers Dolby Digital and DTS Digital Surround and is meant for medium to large sized HDTVs.
“The new 42” 5.1 Home Theater Sound Bar has been engineered to project 102dB of sound with very low distortion, further ensuring audio is heard as the artist intended,” John Schindler, Vizio's VP of Product Management, said as part of the announcement.
“As one of the only 5.1 sound bars on the market, our award-winning 42” model is a great value, featuring a wireless subwoofer that offers room-shaking bass performance going down to 40Hz, satellite speakers for rich, immersive audio and Bluetooth."
Invenshare, Azione Launch Dealer Program
Azione Unlimited and Invenshare.com announced Monday that they have launched a special dealer program for Azione members.
Invenshare is described as "a private web marketplace that connects dealers’ excess inventory in the cloud. Member dealers can easily and quickly add excess and unwanted inventory into the system. When they need something, Invenshare is their digital warehouse where they can instantly search by manufacturer, category or model number."
"For years dealers have been talking about a website that would expedite the alleviation of distressed inventory," Azione founder Richard Glikes said as part of the announcement. "Invenshare has a simple to use, inexpensive way to accomplish that task. Azione Unlimited is excited to be first to adopt this exquisite platform."
Vutec Adds Waldman, Drook
Vutec Corp. announced a pair of new hires this week, adding Dan Drook as national sales manager and Craig Waldman as director of marketing and communications.
“We are very pleased to have Dan join Vutec in this critical role. We are in a strategic growth mode and feel confident that the team is poised to take on the challenges head-on. Our recent additions are sure to provide our sales partners with the level of support they expect,” Howard Sinkoff, CEO of Vutec Corporation, said as part of the announcement.
“We are very pleased to have Craig join Vutec in this critical role. We are in a strategic growth mode and feel confident that the team is poised to take on the challenges head-on. Our recent additions are sure to provide our sales partners with the level of support they expect," Sinkoff added.