Futuresource Says Interactive Flat Panel Display Sales Grew 16% in 2017

Interactive Flat Panels (IFPDs) continued to be a considerable success in 2017 in the education and corporate markets. By Q4, 73 percent of all interactive display sales were IFPDs. The growth has been prodigious, with a CAGR of 48 percent from 2013 to 2017 and growth is forecast to continue. The interactive whiteboard (IWB), the original technology, is in decline but still contributes a significant volume. US had over 50 percent annual IFPD volume and value growth, with rapid transition to larger size IFPDs, well over half of sales are now over 70”. Over 2/3rds of US classrooms now have an interactive display, and the level of growth is forecast to continue.

Previously, this market had been dominated by education, and specifically the K-12 market. The corporate meeting room market has remained an almost untapped market, but the scale of the opportunity is vast, with 32 million corporate meeting rooms globally and well under one million displays installed to date. “The entrance of Microsoft, Google and Cisco is starting to change the industry dynamic, says Colin Messenger, senior market analyst at Futuresource Consulting. “These providers are leveraging their existing channel and user relationships and promoting ‘all-in-one’ meeting room solutions. The volume of interactive displays sold into the corporate market expanded over 30 percent in 2017.”

New interactive touch technologies such as FlatFrog in-glass technology is used by, at least, five major brands and provides a very impressive and highly accurate touch experience. Dell, NEC, HiteVision and Viewsonic are all adding the technology to their high-end ranges. Projective Capacitive (PCAP) technology, often found in the mobile device industry, is also starting to appear; Microsoft’s Surface Hub and Cisco’s Spark Board both have PCAP. With no frame, as the glass goes to edge, it provides better aesthetics, as well as high accuracy and faster speed of writing.

There is a trend towards more display personalisation. This is very useful for a teacher or corporate user moving between classroom/meeting rooms who can set up the display to a pre-set height, content and configurations via biometric fingerprint reader or NFC card.

“Display sizes are increasing, 70” + screens are taking over from 60” and 84” screens are being replaced with 86” versions. This shift is being driven by panel manufacturers moving to new lines with more efficient processes, leading to less wastage and an increased number of panels during production. Also, bezels are becoming narrower, so the actual visible screen real estate is bigger,” adds Messenger.

4K and multi-touch is now standard with most offerings, at least ten touch points. Panel providers are rapidly transitioning large screen sizes (60”+) to 4K from 1080p.

Futuresource has published a 90 page report examines the current state of the interactive display market across 67 countries, exploring market segmentation, drivers and barriers as well as detailed five-year forecasts. You can buy it here.