Black Friday TV Predictions 2014
For consumers looking for rock-bottom prices, November is hands-down the best time of year to purchase a new TV, since these items are the crown jewel of many Black Friday sales. Most big-box retailers like Best Buy will advertise new low prices on TVs in an attempt to generate hype for the upcoming shopping bonanza.
However, it's important to be able to sort the good from the bad when perusing the ads, so we've analyzed TV deals from the past several years to make some predictions about what prices to expect during Black Friday 2014.
Doorbusters vs. Attainable Price-Lows
This time around, we're giving you three price points to consider. Our doorbuster prediction indicates the rock-bottom prices that retailers will use to lure you into their stores; doorbusters will be limited in quantity and thus hard-to-obtain. Some of these prices will still show up online as e-commerce sites like Amazon battle for attention, but those deals will also not last long.
So this year, we also included more attainable price-lows, which we've labeled as "average" prices, for both off-brand TVs (from the likes of Seiki and Westinghouse) as well as name-brand TVs (from Samsung, LG, etc.). These prices are still exceptionally low, but they'll be a bit easier for a more relaxed shopper to obtain.
Check out all of the predictions below, as well as our pick for the best value of 2014. Then read on further for a look at TV trends to expect this Black Friday season.
The Best Doorbuster of the Season Will Be a 60" LCD TV60" 1080p LCD HDTV.
For shoppers willing to risk it all for the glory of a good deal, expect doorbuster prices for these sets to hit $420. This price will be very limited, and camping out at your local big-box may not even guarantee you a set at this price, but expect this to be the magic number retailers use to get your attention.
If you'd like to enjoy your Thanksgiving dinner and don't plan on shopping in-store or until later in the day, you're likely to see 60" TVs hit $460, which is still an amazing bargain considering 2014's best price for a 60" LCD has been $500. For consumers who want a 60" LCD with streaming capabilities or better-than-average picture quality, you'll see brand-name 60" LCDs in the $725 range.
Small Screen Doorbuster Prices Can't Go Any Lower
Just a few years ago, 42" TVs were the doorbuster dream for Black Friday shoppers, as retailers turned to this size category for massive cuts. But as screen sizes grew and more people jumped on the flat-screen bandwagon, the 42" HDTV was no longer the attention-grabber it used to be; plus, prices had already been slashed so low, there wasn't much further stores could reasonably go. For instance, our deal archives show that whereas Black Friday 2011 saw a massive 50% price cut on 42" TV deals, Black Friday 2012 only saw a 10% decline in price. Last year was worse, with deals on 42" TVs dropping just 1% on Black Friday.
Check out the chart below to see how rock-bottom prices have bottomed out for the past few Black Fridays.
That's not to say there won't be good deals on 42" sets, but deal prices for the overall category have bottomed out. So while 42" HDTVs will once again hit $178 this Black Friday, the reality is that this price isn't much different than last year's Black Friday low. This trend will also apply to 46" and 47" LCDs, with deal prices being about the same as they were last year. Rock-bottom prices will hit $299, which is just a buck under the best deal we've seen for this category this year.
Fortunately, not all small-screen TV deals have plateaued in price. Unbelievably, 32" 1080p sets could see a doorbuster price as low as $99. An attainable off-brand price would drop as low as $150, which would still be the best price we've seen all year for a TV in this size category.
Videophiles Will Pay More for Big Screen Plasmas
Plasma TVs have generally provided better picture quality than their LCD counterparts, but most manufacturers have ceased their plasma production leaving LG and Changhong as the sole plasma providers. As a result, plasma deals may be scarce if models are already in low quantity. We predict 60" 1080p LCDs will cost less than their plasma counterparts, checking in at $420 vs. the much higher $559 doorbuster price points.
Cheap 4K TVs Will Be Everywhere
Seiki is the undisputed leader in the budget 4K TV realm, and it has pushed 4K prices down to bargain bin levels. This November, you can expect to see its fleet of cheap 4K TVs everywhere, perhaps even dropping as low as standard 55" LCD prices. It's also likely that a few name-brand 4K sets will see discounts, but keep in mind that 4K content is still scarce and many budget 4K TVs still use an outdated HDMI spec.
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