Get on the Road
percent to almost $250 million. And this is only the beginning. We expect combined sales for portable MP3 players to push $1 billion this year. Expect more manufacturers to solidify the link between auto sound and portable digital audio by incorporating on-board slots for digital flash media cards in car audio receivers.
This presents a golden opportunity for retailers to get ahead of this developing trend. Through creative merchandising and product demonstrations, retailers can begin to educate customers how digital music can be easily extended to the car. Displays akin to the current satellite radio merchandising effort would be quite suitable for this effort.
Sirius and XM can likely credit much of their success to engaging retail merchandising coupled with consumer awareness and education campaigns administered through the channel. In return, satellite radio has been a godsend to the 12-volt market and the sales numbers show it. Factory sales of satellite radio products and accessories topped $140 million last year and CEA expects 2004 sales will surpass that figure. An increasing number of car audio receivers are now bundling satellite radio ready functionality. Dollar sales of satellite-ready CD head units grew 17 percent last year, representing 40 percent of the dollar sales of these products.