This week sees the consumer electronics industry showing off its new wares in Las Vegas for the CES trade show, with lots of glitz and bluster. However, the event started off on a downbeat note as industry body the Consumer Electronics Association predicted that gadget spending will actually fall slightly this year: down 1% year-on-year. That said, this is a 1% fall to $1.055 trillion for the year. This, despite the boom in smartphones and tablets, which now account for 43% of consumer electronics spending across the world. More are being sold, but prices are coming down fast – so the reach of these devices is growing, but the revenues from selling them aren’t rising as fast as you might think. For the music industry, though, the reach is the important thing, particularly as smartphones increase their penetration in countries that don’t have a well-established digital music market.

EarPods and phone

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