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Outdoor TVs, Headphones: What's 'Hot' for Christmas 2012?

By Oonagh Reidy | Thursday | 29/11/2012

Apples, Ultrabooks and headphones are all hot products this Christmas

The Apple suite of products is always a big mover at Christmas says Scott Browning, JB Hi-Fi Marketing Manager - the newly launched iPhone 5, iPad mini will give the 'i' brand a big push.

"We're in the third generation of smartphone technology" and on the Android front Samsung S III and Nokia's new  Lumia 920 Windows Phone are proving popular at the moment.

"Nintendo Wii U, tablets and Ultrabooks are also selling well, but there is a bit of a lag with the changeover to Windows 8," says Browning.

"Automatic success doesn't come overnight," he says, acknowledging the new OS has been panned by some critics adding "W8 is a good platform and a great improvement on W7."

"Microsoft have done a great job...it isn't just a game saver...it's a game changer."

In the Ultrabook space, Asus, Samsung and Dell, which has a model for under $800, are all in demand as are HP devices.

And is the future bright for the super thin, ultra fast notebook looking forward to 2013?

"Its a question of price," he says, but people also value mobility. Long battery life is also an important consideration for many users. Sleek Ultrabooks are for the "more ascetically minded" user and not someone focused on entertainment per se, as they lack DVD drives.

On the tablet front, Samsung tablets are "really powering through," such as the Tab 10.1 without the stylus pen, and the new Galaxy Note is "very popular."

Headphones are also a big staple at this time of year and although "not cheap," they are very popular gifts and people spend a lot of time researching them prior to purchase, says Browning. .

There are other elements in play such as audio quality and fashion concerns, which also influence purchasing decisions.

 JB sells well over 200 models - everything from $37 Sennhesier's to the top end Beats by Dr Dre for $499.

Appliances Online General Manager, Peter Harris, agrees, noting headphones, in particular wireless and noise cancelling, will be hot products over the holidays, adding its the "image conscious who are the big buyers."

On the TV front, Samsung's 19" HD LED LCD TV, "ideal for kids bedrooms," costing under $200, will be a big seller, as will  Liquify Outdoor TVs.

So does JB reckon this Christmas will be busier than last?

"It's hard to tell," admits Browning, as there are so many factors influencing people's behaviour but "there are a lot more positive signals than this time last year."

"It will come down to how well we execute our strategy and how much stocks out competitors have."

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