Digital Media Will Push Growth in a Stagnant Euro Car Audio Market

Digital Media Will Push Growth in a Stagnant Euro Car Audio Market
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Car audio systems are almost ubiquitous in Europe. So vehicle suppliers and manufacturers are looking to digital radio, satellite radio, Bluetooth and other alternatives as revenue generators.
That’s the conclusion of consulting company Frost and Sullivan, which said car systems are close to becoming a “standard, saturated product offering.”
The company said OEMs must “strike the right balance between offering sophisticated features while ensuring cost-effectiveness.” It said the car audio systems market in Europe pulled in 1.49 billion Euros in 2005 and will reach 2.37 billion by 2014 thanks in large part to “explosive” growth of MP3 head units.
“Consumers increasingly want to use the MP3s they burn at home inside their cars,” stated a company official in the announcement. “MP3s are also available, physically separate from the CD, from many other sources. These factors are driving the demand for OE audio systems to offer MP3 playback capabilities — a trend that is promoting future market growth.”
He said carmakers are challenged because the typical time for construction of a vehicle is three to five years, while the typical lifetime for a consumer electronics standard is about a year and a half.

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