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Surround sound is not a new concept to consumers. The advent of HDTV, DVDs, SACD, DTS and other media have increased consumer awareness of the enhanced audio experience of surround sound.

For radio and IBOC, surround is yet another way to show that technology is improving the radio listening experience. But what is the future of surround sound? According to data from the Consumer Electronics Association, consumers will continue to spend a great deal on surround electronics over the next few years.

According to the forecast, sales of surround system for home installation appear to have already peaked. Over the next three years there will be a slow decline in sales, but the predictions show that the numbers will continue to be strong.

On the positive side, the forecast calls for a steady increase in sales of surround systems for car audio use. This holds promise for radio and IBOC, because in-car listening has always been one of the more prevalent uses of terrestrial radio. In addition, the number of surround-sound systems being installed in automobiles is increasing.

Data courtesy of CEA Market Research.

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