February 04, 2010
| by Lisa Montgomery
True or False? Do most people buy an HDTV before big events like the Super Bowl or the Olympics?
According to a recent random survey of 600 people by Retrevo, the answer is false.
Although these media events may spur some people to buy an HDTV, the biggest motivator is price. Seventy-five percent of the survey respondents said that major events like the Super Bowl don’t matter as much as a good deal.
Eleven percent said the Super Bowl would be enough to get them to buy a new HDTV; 10 percent said the Olympics would do it; and 4 percent said other events like the Academy Awards and Sweeps Week would (see Chart 1 below).
Apparently, to most people it also doesn’t matter much that the Super Bowl and the Olympics will be broadcast in high-def. When asked if they would be able to receive Olympics coverage in high-definition, 49 percent said they weren’t sure; only 1 percent said they would change service in order to receive the coverage in high-def, despite the hundreds of hours of coverage from Vancouver that NBC has planned (Chart 2).
Of course, part of that last one goes back to a common plague of HD—often people buy the new TVs and think they are receiving high-definition broadcasts but really aren’t because they haven’t switched their satellite or cable boxes.
As for enjoying the 5.1 surround-sound experience that high-def delivers, 51 percent said they don’t care about events being broadcast in surround sound and don’t own a surround-sound system (Chart 3).
Charts courtesy of Retrevo
Lisa Montgomery has been writing about home technology for 15 years, with a focus on the impact of electronics on a modern lifestyle.