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The Way of Android

While wandering the streets of Tokyo this past weekend, I came up with a theory that a city - and the people within it - is made up of alternating layers of the strange and the expected.

Mobile Payments, Not Rocket Science

NPD Connected Intelligence President, Eddie Hold, explains what makes mobile payments much simpler in other countries and speculates why the U.S. has been slower to adopt mobile payment solutions.

Jun 18, 2018
Foodservice

If Consumers Call It Meat, It’s Meat

There is a debate surrounding the formal definitions of “meat” and “milk” in light of more plant-based meat and milk alternatives in the marketplace. NPD’s David Portalatin suggests the focus be less on the debate and more on meeting U.S. consumers increasing demand for protein.

Jun 15, 2018
Video Games

Reflections on E3 2018

NPD video games analyst Mat Piscatella offers his take on how E3 has evolved over the 13 years he has worked in the games industry

Jun 13, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: Team Sports Equipment Recap

It has so far been a solid year for the U.S. team sports equipment market, helped by the new youth baseball bat regulations and golf equipment sales.

Jun 11, 2018
Beauty

Are Men the New Scent Aficionados?

Men in the U.S. are increasingly investing in fragrance. As Father’s Day approaches, the opportunity is ripe for brands and retailers to entice the purchase of men’s fragrances.

Jun 4, 2018
Apparel

Weaving Sustainable Messaging Into Fashion

As temperatures finally warmed up, something I thought was never going to happen – I set my sights on switching out clothing to match the season.

May 31, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: The State of the U.S. Activewear Market

Activewear sales from February through April 2018 were essentially flat, as the proliferation of fashion brands emulating performance wear continues to take its toll, says NPD’s Matt Powell.

May 31, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: The State of the U.S. Athletic Footwear Market

Athletic footwear sales from February through April 2018 grew in the low single-digits. Matt Powell recaps how key categories and brands performed during these months.

Michael Diamond

Innovation Management – Whacking Piñatas

According to NPD’s U.S. B2B Software and Cloud Tracking Service, one of the fastest growing markets of software is the content and collaboration market. NPD’s Mike Diamond explores how innovation and the need for information management is driving this growth.

Michael Diamond

The Future of Cloud – The Ultimate Trojan Horse

Mike Diamond, Director, Industry Analysis, B2B Technology for The NPD Group, discusses the opportunities that cloud has created for channel partners.

May 22, 2018
Beauty

From K to J Beauty

Innovative formats, funky ingredients and playful products are hallmarks of K-Beauty, but another country that boasts time-tested rituals and ingredients has been on the industry’s mind recently: Japan.

May 21, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: Legalized Gambling and Sports Retail

The recent decision by the U.S. Supreme Court which allows states to regulate gambling on sports will have an impact on the sports retail business, Matt Powell explains.

May 14, 2018
Food Consumption

Checking Out Amazon Go Without The Check Out

Amazon Go is a new kind of store featuring, as Amazon describes, “the world's most advanced shopping technology.” Darren Seifer, NPD food and beverage industry analyst, visits the Amazon Go store in Seattle to get a first-hand look at what some bill as the store of tomorrow.

Michael Diamond

Not The Same As It Ever Was

Mike Diamond, Director, Industry Analysis, B2B Technology for The NPD Group, breaks down some of the factors contributing to growth in the B2B information security market.

May 10, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: Social Responsibility in Sports Retail

In his latest blog, NPD Group’s Matt Powell discusses the consumer behavior of Gen Z, the emphasis they place on social responsibility and why brands and retailers must pay attention.

It’s Time to Rethink the Watch Gender Divide

Historically watches have been labeled “men’s” and “women’s”, but several factors are changing this dynamic - the top watches for men aren't just for men anymore. Industry analysis shows non-gender specificity is an emerging trend in luxury watches that top watch brands are embracing, and now retailers need to as well.

May 2, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: Managing the Marketplace

One of the most difficult tasks in sports retail is managing the marketplace, especially with hot items. Matt Powell offers ways brands can do this effectively to achieve steadier growth and higher profits.

The Wedding of the Century

NPD Connected Intelligence President, Eddie Hold, analyzes what the newly proposed T-Mobile and Sprint merger could mean for the industry, and discusses the need for mergers and acquisitions as the competitive landscape continues to shift in this digital economy.

Apr 23, 2018
Foodservice

Today’s Realities Are Redefining Foodservice

Convenience is and will always be the chief reason consumers use restaurants, but the definition of convenience changes as consumers’ daily realities change.

Welcome to the neighborhood Nordstrom Rack

It’s been quite some time since Nordstrom announced that they were going to be opening their first Nordstrom Rack store in Canada; and since then, there has been significant buzz around when this was going to happen.

Apr 12, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: Are You Experienced?

The retail experience has never been more complicated, or more important. NPD’s Matt Powell explores the critical components that make a great experience, and what sports retailers can do about it.

The Consumer Needs to Be First and Foremost

The consumer backlash against GMOs (genetically modified organisms) in the food industry could stem from the fact that the benefits of GMOS were only touted to farmers and agribusiness in the beginning and not to consumers.

Apr 6, 2018
Technology

Where Angels Fear To Tread

NPD Connected Intelligence President, Eddie Hold, discusses the advantages and challenges SpaceX may face in its endeavor to create a satellite-based broadband service, known as Starlink.

Michael Diamond

IoT Implications: A World of Pre-Alerts

Mike Diamond, Director, Industry Analysis, Commercial Technology for The NPD Group, looks at how AI will impact B2B software and hardware needs.

Apr 3, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: Team Sports Equipment Year in Review

Overall for 2017, U.S. team sports equipment sales declined in the single digits, but below the surface it was a mixed bag, with notable pockets of growth.

Mar 28, 2018
Office Supplies

A Digital Detox

With many technologies and smart devices at our disposal, consumers nevertheless need a cleanse from the digital stare. New office designs; growth in pen, planner and notebook sales; and trends like bullet journaling and hand lettering, reflect this digital detox.

The March Four’easter

With four snowstorms hitting the Northeast in March, seasons are blurring as late winter/early spring is seemingly colder and snowier than ever. Contrary to early ads touting sandal weather, boot sales in March have grown the last two years, with the top growing cities being New York, Philadelphia, Chicago and Boston.

Mar 21, 2018
Toys

Global Toy Industry Opportunities Amid Toys“R”Us Closure

The global toy industry is bracing itself and trying to work out what this ‘reset’ will mean. Who will benefit from Toys “R”Us’ demise; and if it happens globally, which retailers will see this disruption as an opportunity, country by country?

Fragmented Future of TV

To simplify the complex web of live TV options, NPD Connected Intelligence’s John Buffone has distilled the future into four personas. Identify who you most resemble and perhaps learn a new way to access your favorite shows.

Mar 19, 2018
Toys

What Toys‟R”Us Closing Means for the Toy Industry

Crunching the numbers, The NPD Group’s Juli Lennett sets the record straight on what will likely happen to the toy industry when Toys‟R”Us closes all its doors in the U.S.

Mar 15, 2018
Sports , Beauty

Sneakernomics: What the Sports Industry Can Learn from Beauty

In today’s retail landscape, industries cannot live strictly in their silos, but must learn from each other. Beauty is among the fastest-growing. Here are the top trends driving its success today, and what others like the sports industry can learn from it.

MWC 2018: The Perpetual Déjà Vu of Flagship Smartphones

The heavy promotional push on the Samsung S9 variants by carriers, coupled with the price of the iPhone X, will create the ideal landscape for Samsung to strengthen its foothold in the U.S. market, says Brad Akyuz of NPD’s Connected Intelligence.

Mar 5, 2018
Foodservice

Watch Out World, Here Come the Zs!

Although it may be easy to assume that Gen Zs will carry on the attitudes and behaviors of Millennials, that assumption is likely incorrect.

Mar 1, 2018
Toys

Post-Toy Fair Blues

Globally, fewer toys were sold during Holiday 2017 than 2016. Why? How can this be overturned? Frédérique Tutt explores how parents shopped, and what opportunities lie between the challenges facing the toy industry today.

Mobile World Congress in Review

This year’s Mobile World Congress is wrapping up and soon everyone will be heading to the airport.

Feb 27, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: Sports Retail in the Internet Age, Part 2

In my previous blog, I wrote about the ways in which retailers can revolutionize the in-store environment to survive the internet age.

With HomePod, Apple’s Audio Ambitions Come In Crystal Clear

Earlier this month, HomePod pre-orders began shipping, and as of February 9, excited new owners began receiving their speakers.

Feb 23, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: Sports Retail in the Internet Age, Part 1

In 2017, growth in the U.S. athletic footwear and activewear markets meagerly improved.

Getting them hooked

I gave my daughter, Charlotte, her first phone when she was just five years old. It was hardly an appropriate age, but what’s the point of having kids if you cannot use them in the occasional social experiment.

Telecom and Tapas

It’s nearly time for Mobile World Congress, a show that provides a chance to catch up on the latest mobile solutions, as well as feast on the best tapas and sangria Barcelona has to offer (along with 100,000 of our closest colleagues).

Beneath The Surface

A few months ago, I started thinking about buying a compact camera. My friends thought I was crazy; after all, my smartphone has a pretty good camera.

Michael Diamond

2017 Indirect Channel: A Love-Hate Relationship Heats Up

For 20+ years the IT industry has predicted a cataclysmic event known as the end of the indirect channel.

Feb 20, 2018
Beauty

Trust Beyond the Chair

Before the internet and social media, there were no channels for hair professionals to build trust with clients aside from in the salon.

The Smartphone Wall

Huawei is a giant among most smartphone players with an impressive presence in most parts of the world.

Back To Basics

A few years ago a friend of mine was mugged in London. Two men waved knives at him and demanded his wallet, his smartphone... and then his other phone.

Jan 30, 2018
Home , Appliances

Home’s Biggest Challenge in 2018 – Beating 2017

The home industry continues to travel along its growth trajectory, but 2018 may look a little different, merely because 2017 results took such a dramatic leap forward.

Jan 30, 2018
Retail , Sports

Sneakernomics: State of the Outdoor Retail Industry

On the heels of the Outdoor Retailer show, Matt Powell outlines the in-store and online performance of the U.S. outdoor industry stepping into 2018, across apparel, footwear and equipment.

Jan 24, 2018
Video Games

2018 US Video Game Market Predictions

The console and PC games markets had an amazing 2017.

Jan 23, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: Solutions for the Sports Retail Industry

In my annual predictions here, I explained why 2018 is positioned to be another mediocre year for the U.S. sports industry, as it is following in the footsteps of the tepid sales growth, heavy promoting, and weak profits of 2017.

Jan 23, 2018
Video Games

Mat’s 2017 US Video Game Market Prediction Results

Now that 2017 full year data for the video game category from The NPD Group is in the books (check out our video for all the detail), it’s time to get the report card.

Jan 19, 2018
Apparel

Apparel’s Just Gotta Have Fun in 2018

When a new year arrives, I start to think of the things I’d like to do differently from the last.

Speed and Compression-Based Data Tariffs – Will Consumers Bite?

Commoditization of Cellular Data has been a major theme discussed throughout the year as unlimited data plans have become the de facto offering in the U.S. mobile market.

Jan 18, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: The Golf Business Remains Challenged

The golf retail market in the U.S. remains challenged, largely impacted by the fact that Millennials are not picking up the game at the rate that Boomers are aging out of it.

2018’s Three C’s of Fashion Footwear & Accessories

Fashion footwear and accessories players are looking for opportunity in 2018, following a soft 2017.

CES in Review

The dust is settling, the power is back on, and presumably, Las Vegas is starting to dry out.

Inevitable Path of Consolidation – What’s Next for Sprint?

In my last predictions piece The Cable Threat is More Real Than Ever, I covered how the cable players are poised to become even more of a threat in the already competitive U.S. mobile market in 2018.

The Cable Threat is More Real Than Ever

When Comcast launched its Xfinity Mobile service in 2017, it wasn’t taken too seriously by the competition, due to its lack of retail presence and limited device/service portfolio.

Pack Your Bags – Adventure Awaits

We have been hearing the drumbeat for some time… We are in search of meaningful experiences and, as consumers, we are now comfortable trading our spending on material acquisition for the intangible.

Jan 9, 2018
Sports

Sneakernomics: Sports Retail Predictions for 2018

On the surface, the 2017 results for the U.S. sports industry appear to be below average, but not a disaster.

2018: A Year of Defining Uncertainty

What do you do when your boss decides you should write a “crystal ball” blog about the upcoming year?

Jan 5, 2018
Beauty

Beauty Outlook 2018

I once read that 90% of the decisions we make are emotional, and thinking about what will drive the beauty industry’s growth and change in the year to come, emotion is at the forefront.

Jan 5, 2018
Foodservice

New Year, New Realities

Technology, generational change, and emerging consumer food values will result in new realities for both retail food and foodservice in 2018 and beyond.

Blame it on the Moon

The U.S. is number four in the list of innovative countries worldwide, according to a June 2017 Business Insider article.

Peering into a Wearable Future

For a category that has faced much skepticism, it’s hard to argue that the wearable tech category has not been a success story so far.

Is Amazon Primed for Mobile Expansion?

In my previous blog, Dishing Out Mobile Predictions, we explored Dish’s desire to launch an IoT-focused mobile network and how Amazon would be a natural partner in this enterprise.

2018 Could Be a Rocky Road for Retail

Everyone wrote retail off during Holiday 2017, but the consumer was resilient and the economy keeps chugging along.

The Smartwatch Boom is Here

For a product that was criticized by many only a short time ago, the smartwatch has regained momentum in the U.S. market.

Dishing Out Mobile Predictions

It’s that time of year - presents are being wrapped, the weather is getting a lot colder, and we huddle up somewhere warm to start writing down our predictions for the New Year.

Dec 14, 2017
Beauty

A Beauty-full Holiday Season

Walking through the beauty departments of a wide variety of retailers this past week, I was overwhelmed by the choices available to me for gifting beauty.

Dec 12, 2017
Foodservice

Foodservice Convenience At The Speed Of Light

I have been in the foodservice industry, actually working in the industry and later watching the industry, for a real long time.

Dec 12, 2017
Sports

What the Sports Business Can Learn from the Toy Business

The New York Times published a fascinating article a couple days ago on WowWee Brand’s Fingerling toy, one of the hottest toys of the holiday season.

Individuality and The Smartphone

“Did I ever tell ya that this here jacket represents a symbol of my individuality, and my belief in personal freedom?” So said Sailor Ripley in Wild at Heart back in 1990.

Consumers Get Crafty this Holiday Season

The U.S. office supplies industry is no exception to the shopping trends emerging this holiday season, as there are several products trending for holiday crafting, gift giving, and home décor.

Dec 5, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: Retail Should be Omnipresent, not Omnichannel

I’ve never liked the term “omnichannel” to describe the new sports retail environment. To me, this is looking at the business from an old school, logistics-driven point of view.

In Search of a 5G Business Need

“I talk to other CEOs around the world in this space, and we’ve all been struggling a little bit making the business case work,” said Gavin Patterson, CEO of the UK’s BT Group, when discussing the need for 5G at a recent conference.

Dec 4, 2017
Footwear

Cyber Season

I’m just a sample of one, but I witnessed what I thought to be healthy crowds at a suburban New York mall on Black Friday. I also heard from a few others (who braved outlet centers!) that cars were being turned away due to lack of available parking.

Sneakernomics: “Surprise and Delight”

The U.S. sports industry is in a downward spiral, and price is the primary driver. Retail must return to the days of inspirational and aspirational products that surprise and delight consumers.

Nov 28, 2017
Home , Appliances

Hot Home “Gifts” for Holiday 2017

Home-related products will continue their hot streak during the 2017 holiday season.

Nov 28, 2017
Beauty

The Gift of Great Skin

Traditionally, skincare has not been the most giftable beauty category. Aside from me, not many dream of opening a holiday present to reveal a cleanser and moisturizer in a pretty package.

Nov 28, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: Black Friday 2017

As expected, Black Friday 2017 was marked by broader and deeper discounts than last year. Promotions started earlier than last year as well. Most Black Friday deals were available before Thanksgiving.

Nov 28, 2017
Retail

Thanksgiving Week Got a Bump, But Holiday Sales Are Still Out of Balance

Stores were certainly busier than last year, but from what I saw Thanksgiving and Black Friday were a mixed bag this year.

Beached Whales and Neutral Ground

In England, all beached whales must be offered to the Reigning Monarch.

Black Friday, This Year’s New Tradition

NPD technology analyst, Ben Arnold, analyzes shopping on Black Friday instead of Thanksgiving day.

Nov 21, 2017
Toys

Let’s Reconsider Discounting Toys for Christmas

Rather than discount toys during Christmas, the industry needs to consider occasions outside of this peak season to generate growth. From Women’s Day to Chinese New Year, there are examples around the globe.

Nov 15, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: The Private Brand Defense

This is turning out to be the most promotional year in U.S. sports retail that I have ever seen.

Nov 13, 2017
Food Consumption

Real Life Lessons Learned and Treasured

U.S. consumers have new attitudes about their eating choices and food and foodservice companies are addressing these new realities.

Nov 7, 2017
Apparel

Tis the Season To Be Unique – Apparel Looks To New Shopping Experiences

A good portion of my family members celebrate their birthdays in the fall.

Nov 7, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: Third Quarter Sales Results for U.S. Athletic Footwear and Apparel

After an unseasonably warm and very promotional September, the U.S. athletic footwear market eked out a gain in the third quarter of 2017, with dollar sales up 2 percent.

Nov 7, 2017
Footwear

Sensible Shoe(moji)

Those of you who have seen my presentations know that I use the occasional emoji in trying to make some of my points, channeling the primary communication style of my five-year-old daughter and pre-teen nieces.

Oct 31, 2017
Video Games

U.S. Video Game September Results Representative of a Resurgent Console Market

The NPD Group reported US sales of video game products in the month of September grew 39% when compared to a year ago, reaching $1.2B in the month.

Oct 30, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: Holiday 2017 Outlook for the Sports Industry

Pun intended, the holiday season is “the most wonderful time of the year” for all the major industries it touches yet, at some point in time, chances are each will be struck by a double-edged sword scenario.

Oct 27, 2017
Retail

Holiday 2017 vs. Holiday 2016: Apples to Apples, or Apples to Oranges?

Every year we talk about how the upcoming holiday season will compare to the prior, but sometimes that isn’t the best comparison to make.

Footwear: The New Fast Fashion

Sneakers! Mules! Over the Knee Boots! Ankle Booties! Over the past few years it seems that every fashion conversation starts and ends with footwear.

Seattle Innovation Meets Hollywood Tradition

This past week, technology and entertainment news has been largely dominated by Amazon, as they launched six new Echo devices and revealed insight into the final stages of their strategy to move further into movie production and distribution.

Sep 29, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: The Goose that Laid the Golden Eggs

In one of Aesop’s Fables, “The Goose that Laid the Golden Eggs,” a farmer owns a goose that lays a golden egg every day.

Sep 29, 2017
Beauty

Where is the Luxe?

Within skincare, there has historically been a point of difference not only between mass and prestige, but also between prestige and luxury.

Sep 28, 2017
Automotive

Ten Percent Makes a Difference

It has been almost a full year since the launch of NPD’s Retail Tracking Service – Expanded Channels (RTSx) for the U.S. automotive aftermarket.

A Tale of Many iPhones

The initial fanfare of last week’s Apple announcements has subsided and the debate has moved from what will be announced to which device consumers will purchase.

Sep 18, 2017
Automotive

The Impact of Severe Weather on the Nation’s Energy and Automotive Aftermarket Industries

Being a resident of Katy, Texas (a suburb about 20 miles west of downtown Houston), I found myself right in the middle of Hurricane Harvey as it made landfall on the Texas Gulf Coast at the end of August.

Peering at the Edge of Mobility

This year’s Mobile World Congress (MWC) Americas is, in many ways, a story of edges. Smartphone manufacturers, such as Apple (which doesn’t need to actually exhibit to show its importance), Essential, and Samsung, are clearly demonstrating that phones should have less edge, in the drive to create a single glass front.

Apple Watch Finally Broke Free with LTE

While the smartwatch is still not a mass-market device, with roughly 9.5 percent penetration among U.S. adults as of the middle of 2017, Apple has certainly been doing its part to push the category in that direction.

Sep 12, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: What Sports Retail Can Learn from Fast Fashion

Given this current malaise in the U.S. sports business, it is important for the industry to look across the retail landscape for ideas on how to improve its current condition.

The X Factor

Tomorrow, Apple is expected to launch its next generation iPhone.

Sep 5, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: Small is the New Big

In a recent blog post, The Future Looks PUNY, I outlined that many of the success stories amidst today’s retail malaise have centered on the ideas of Premium, Unique, New and Young (PUNY).

Aug 31, 2017
Foodservice

Pizza Hut Delivers in the Flood

I'm a Houston resident and like most Houstonians I've been battling flood waters all week. One of the things I’ve been amazed by during Harvey is just how good the food industry is.

Totally Wireless Earbuds Bring the Loud to Stereo Headphone Sales

Technology Analyst Ben Arnold examines totally wireless earbuds, a new headphone segment that has come out of the emergence of Bluetooth.

Aug 30, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: What the Nike Amazon Deal really means for the Sports Industry

A lot has been written about the “pilot program” that Nike agreed to sell direct to Amazon, much of it filled with misconceptions and errors. Let’s try to set the record straight.

Baker’s Dozen: A View into the Future of Consumer Tech Holiday 2017 and Beyond

Each year around the holidays, NPD provides what we have come to call the Baker’s Dozen - a list of 13 predictions for the holiday season, as it relates to technology products and retail trends.

Aug 28, 2017
Video Games

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner: How Microsoft is Looking to Heat Up Holiday Competition on Console

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds is the most popular and best-selling entertainment property you may have never heard of.

Aug 23, 2017
Apparel

The New Look of Back-to-School

This back-to-school shopping season is a clear reflection of changing times.

Aug 23, 2017
Food Consumption

A New Take on Health and Wellness

It’s that time of year when I gather and review all of the food and beverage and foodservice research we’ve conducted over the past year and begin compiling the next annual edition of Eating Patterns in America.

Aug 21, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: No, Athleisure is not Dead

With the disappointing quarterly results from some of the major sports retailers, there has been a renewed cry that the athleisure trend is over.

Aug 14, 2017
Beauty

Pulling at Our Heartstrings

I am a proud Millennial. I look fondly on memories of playing with my Skip It, being obsessed with gel pens, playing MASH with my friends to find out what my future would hold, and having what seemed like a million Tamagotchi’s that all inevitably died when parenthood exhausted me.

Aug 14, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: Second Quarter Performance for the U.S. Athletic Footwear and Activewear Markets

The calendar was kinder to the second quarter than the first, but challenges still remain in the athletic footwear and activewear space.

Aug 14, 2017
Sports

Sneakernomics: Second Quarter Performance for the U.S. Athletic Footwear and Activewear Markets

The calendar was kinder to the second quarter than the first, but challenges still remain in the athletic footwear and activewear space.

Aug 8, 2017
Home , Appliances

The Power of a Back-to-College Connection

Excitement and happiness are present for many of today’s back-to-college shoppers, but they also report feeling stressed, anxious, and overwhelmed, especially as moving day gets closer.

Jul 27, 2017
Beauty

Are Beard Oils the New Aftershave?

As a kid, I used to watch my dad shave his face. I especially loved it when he would clap his face with aftershave, look into the mirror and say, “Damn, I’m handsome,” signaling the completion of his manly ablutions.


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