Protecting Our Industry’s Future
The mission of the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) is to support the consumer electronics industry. Year after year, the International CES hosts the world’s greatest festival of technology and ingenuity. In 2007, CE sales are projected to top $155
billion in the United States—a 7 percent growth over 2006. The consumer electronics industry is driving our economy, providing good jobs to two million Americans, and ensuring that America continues to lead the world in innovation.
But as is often the case, the success and growth of one industry, particularly an innovative sector fostering change, is perceived as a threat by other industries wedded to entrenched business models. Now, more than ever, I fear our industry faces opposition from outside forces afraid of growth and change; the cornerstones of the CE industry.
The digital era has not been well received by those who harbor reticence to change. In the past year we have seen battles against new technologies and distribution channels into the home. For example, cable interests have been reluctant to permit competition to legacy cable boxes. CEA has worked with the Federal Communications Commission on recommendations about CableCards and separable security that would permit the development of set-top box competition. Some broadcasters have reacted to new competition by attacking innovative new technologies like satellite radio.