Viewing habits developed during COVID here to stay: BenQ
There has been a noteworthy shift towards more personalised content consumption. Screen time has increased substantially compared to the pre-COVID era and remains high, even after the pandemic.
India's viewing patterns have shifted from family viewing to personalised content consumption which is here to stay, suggests BenQ, a Taiwanese display solutions company.
The company spoke to PTI on aspects of business transformation post-COVID pandemic, and the future trajectory in the most populous country of the world--India.
"Prior to the pandemic, the major mode of content consumption was centred around family viewing. However, there has been a noteworthy shift towards more personalised content consumption. Screen time has increased substantially compared to the pre-COVID era and remains high, even after the pandemic. This suggests that the habits developed during COVID are here to stay," Rajeev Singh, Managing Director-India, BenQ said.
BenQ India has made significant strides in becoming one of the top three countries globally in terms of revenue contribution, said Jeffrey Liang, BenQ President for Asia Pacific Corporation. "For the first time, our company has become the dominant player in the Indian market, surpassing other regions. This achievement underscores the exceptional growth that the Indian market is currently experiencing, with our company outpacing this growth." The growth trajectory in India, Liang added, is not just a matter of chance but a result of "dedicated effort" spanning the past six to seven years.
"In the post-COVID era, our business has undergone a significant transformation, achieving an impressive growth rate of nearly 50% over the last three years, following a January to December business cycle," Singh added.
The growth is interestingly on the back of online gaming and e-sports, Singh shared. "We pioneered the concept of gaming monitors, specifically designed for eSports, about 12 years ago." He added that the e-sports scene has been evolving in India, although it has been somewhat behind compared to neighbouring countries like China, Thailand, and Malaysia.
Even post-COVID, the hybrid working model continues to rely heavily on video conferencing, and physical meetings have decreased, Singh pointed out.
"People are now more comfortable with virtual meetings, and this has driven the demand for display devices, which are crucial for these virtual interactions. The use of interactive flat panels and smart projectors for virtual meetings is on the rise," he said.
Singh said in educational settings, the adoption of digital teaching tools like interactive flat panels has surged. "The resistance from teachers, who were accustomed to traditional teaching methods, has diminished, and digital and virtual teaching has become the norm. As a result, schools are increasingly deploying interactive devices, and government programmes are promoting their use to enhance teaching standards. This has led to a significant and ongoing demand, which is expected to persist for several years," Singh noted.
Regarding the use of projectors at home, the closure of movie theatres during the pandemic prompted a shift in consumer behaviour, as per BenQ.
"The availability of broadband and OTT platforms allowed people to enjoy movies from the comfort of their
homes, offering a different experience compared to traditional television. High-quality projectors, especially those offering 4K resolution, have gained popularity for enjoying events like cricket matches, providing a superior viewing experience compared to smaller devices."
These factors, Singh pointed out, collectively drive the demand for display devices, both in the home entertainment sector and the B2B segment. The change in consumer habits, driven by the pandemic, has had a lasting impact on content consumption and technology usage.
Sharing predictions for the ongoing quarter, Singh said the ongoing year, up to December 2023, is also expected to show a remarkable 50% year-on-year revenue growth.
In the projector business, Singh said BenQ has a market share of approximately 30-33% in the first half of this year.
"We dominate the fast-growing 4K segment with a market share of around 42% in the same period. Our fastest-growing business, and the one we anticipate becoming our top revenue contributor in 2023, is the interactive flat panel business." This segment, Singh informed, primarily serves the B2B market, with applications in the education and corporate segments. "We have experienced significant growth in this area and currently hold the second-largest market share in India, with 20%," he added.
Speaking on the competition, Singh said in the interactive flat panel space, the number one brand is ViewSonic while in the DLP Projector business, BenQ claims the number one spot. "It's interesting to note that Sony and Panasonic are not currently involved in the interactive flat panel business. However, they do compete in the projector market. As of now, both these brands have a relatively small market share, hovering around 1% ... In comparison, BenQ has a significantly stronger presence in the projector market, with a market share exceeding 30%. This indicates a substantial lead over Sony and Panasonic in the projector segment," he said.
Edited by Suman Singh