As the largest city in Southern California, Los Angeles has more than its share of consumer electronics stores. With just about 50 Circuit City stores and 18 Best Buys, two of the most ubiquitous electronics retailers are well represented. Add to that, the over 1,000 smaller shops and chain stores and you have a situation where the populace is saturated with choices as they search for their next big screen television. The phrase consumer electronics is associated with electronic equipment built for everyday use. The products are most often utilized for communications, entertainment and personal productivity.
Leading consumer electronics products include PCs, telephones, speakers, TVs, and electronic calculators. The more popular brands of electronics include many huge domestic and foreign manufacturers, such as Apple, Philips, Samsung, Sanyo, Sony and Toshiba, among others. The Consumer Electronics Association estimates 2007 nationwide consumer electronics purchases at 150 billion dollars. A very big portion of those sales can be found in Los Angeles, and other leading cites like New York and Boston.
As previously noted, consumer electronics are made around the globe, though there is an extremely high concentration of manufacturing performed in Asia, particularly China and Singapore. The newest consumer electronics are previewed yearly at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, NV, which is near to Los Angeles, at which many industry pioneers make speeches including Microsoft's Bill Gates. One interesting characteristic of the consumer electronic field is the continuous trend of lower prices. Industry insiders posit that such a development is due to gains in manufacturing efficiency and increased automation, combined with many improvements in semiconductors.
The widely believed Moore's Law, says that, for a specific price, electronics industry functionality doubles every 18 months. Consumer electronics in Los Angeles, CA and elsewhere in the country, and in the world, continue in a trend of functional combinations, wherein a DVD player and television convert to a media center, combining elements of several electronic items. Consumers face difficult decisions when purchasing electronics items. Doing so is starting to be more about an item's style and price, as opposed to its specifications and performance.
On the negative side, loads of consumer electronics result in e-waste. It is thought that in 2003 the United States alone generated over 2.8 million tons of electronic waste. Less than 10 percent of that amount was recycled.
Matt Paolini is a technology writer} for CityBook.com, the family-safe online yellow pages, which carries an extensive directory on the subject of Los Angeles research, design and development.