This is partly because cordcutters and device-shifters abound. These are people like Julia Scott, a 36-year-old retail deals blogger (bargainbabe.com) in Rhode Island who just ditched her television completely because she didn't want it ruling her home as her two young children grow up.
Ramirez of dealnews says video game players should more than make up for cord-cutters: "Gamers are a huge crowd, and these are people paying $400 for a console, so they will pay $900 for a new TV to match it."
This year's extra features include sets with smart TV apps built in—meaning that the TV connects to wi-fi networks and can connect seamlessly to streaming services like Netflix, Hulu and Amazon.
There's also 4K—which refers to a resolution that is much higher than the current HD standard of 1080p. Some models also feature curved screens.
Most shoppers dismiss all of these elements in favor of price and size, though. "Screen size is the most important factor in the U.S.," says DisplaySearch's Gagnon.
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That often leaves people not really considering whether they are truly getting a good deal or what the quality of the item is, says Matthew Ong, a senior retail analyst for Nerdwallet.com (nerdwallet.com).
Many retailers show a sale price and a "regular" price, noting a huge percentage discount to entice consumers. But they could be using a false starting point for that original price, Ong says. For instance, Ong analyzed a Sears deal for a $599 55" Samsung TV with the original price listed as $1,199, but earlier in November is was selling for $807. A $200 discount is pretty good but does not sound as impressive as a $600 one.
Another tip from Ong is to look carefully at the specifications of the TV on sale, because many Black Friday deals are for stripped-down knock-offs. "They'll look similar, but they won't be as advanced," Ong says. The tip-off is whether you recognize the brand and if there is a model number, so you can compare prices and specifications.