Philips Consumer Lifestyle

Last updated
Philips Consumer Lifestyle
Type Division
Industry Electronics
Headquarters Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Key people
Frans van Houten (CEO)
Products Consumer electronics, small appliances
RevenueIncrease2.svg 10.576 billion (2006)
Increase2.svg 416 million (2006)
Parent Philips

Philips Consumer Lifestyle is a division of the Dutch multinational electronics company Philips which produces consumer electronics and small appliances. It is the only Philips division headquartered in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. The Americas division is headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut.


Philips Consumer Lifestyle was formed in 2008 from the merger of Philips Consumer Electronics and Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care.

Philips receives royalties from the sale of every CD, [1] DVD [2] and Blu-ray [3] .


Philips radio receiver, Model 930A (1931) Philips 930.jpg
Philips radio receiver, Model 930A (1931)

While Philips' first product was manufactured in 1891, the first product that would fit in the Consumer Electronics division was a television, experimentally manufactured in 1925. In 1927, Philips began producing radios. Only five years later, Philips had sold one million of them. One other major product release came in 1963, when the Compact Cassette was introduced.

After Philips Consumer Electronics acquired companies as Magnavox and Sylvania in the late 1970s, Philips managed to sell their 100-millionth TV-set in 1984. Philips still is the European television market leader, as well as the third in the world.[ when? ]

Because of the enormous growth, Philips decided to split up their company divisions during the 1990s. While Philips CE contains most of the Consumer Electronics, other products such as Philips' shavers were located under the Domestic Appliances division.

As of 2012 Philips is no longer directly involved in TV manufacturing, because it has outsourced it to a joint venture with TPV Technology, called TP Vision. [4]

Philips announced in January 2013 [5] that it agreed to sell its consumer electronics division to Japan-based Funai Electric Co. for Euro 150 million (US$201.8 million). This would leave mainly consumer products for personal care and health in this division of Philips. [6] However, in October 2013, Philips announced that it would not proceed with the sale, instead initiating litigation against Funai, alleging breach of contract by Funai. [7]

Product timeline


Compact Cassette

In 1962 Philips invented the compact audio cassette medium for audio storage. Although there were other magnetic tape cartridge systems, the Compact Cassette became dominant as a result of Philips's decision to license the format free of charge.


Laserdisc was a 30 cm disc designed with MCA meant to compete with VHS and even replace it. It was not as generally popular as VHS, because of the initial investment costs of players, somewhat higher costs of movie titles, and the read-only format. But like Betamax, it enjoyed extensive success among serious video collectors. The technologies created for Laserdisc would later be used again for the Compact Disc.

Compact Disc (CD)

Although Philips' and MCA's Laserdisc project never reached the VHS mass market level, Philips still thought the format should be able to succeed, and, in collaboration with Sony, launched the smaller CD in 1982.

Philips optical disk Philips Optical Data Disk.jpg
Philips optical disk
Philips Cdi Philips cdi 450.jpg
Philips Cdi


The DVD (Digital Versatile Disc or Digital Video Disc), the eventual successor of the CD (Compact Disc), met a long road of setbacks. Philips wanted to continue with the CD in a new format called MultiMedia Compact Disc (MMCD), while another group (led by Toshiba) was developing a competing format, then named Super Density (SD) disc. Their representatives approached IBM for advice on the file system. IBM also learned of Philips' and Sony's initiative. IBM convinced a group of computer industry experts (among them Apple, Dell, etc.) to form a working group. The Technical Working Group (TWG) voted to boycott both formats unless they merged to prevent another format war (like the videotape format war). The result was the DVD specification, finalized in 1995. The DVD video format was first introduced in Japan in 1996, later in 1997 in the U.S. as limited test run, then across Europe and the other continents from late 1998 onwards.

Blu-ray Disc

Blu-ray Disc, yet again primarily developed by Philips and Sony, utilizes blue-violet coloured diodes to create an even shorter wavelength beam than CD or DVD. Because of this, the capacity is much more than that of CD or DVD, being 25 GB single-layered or 50 GB dual-layered.

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  8. "Waarom stopt Philips met zelf televisies maken?". de Volkskrant . 18 April 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
  9., History of Philips CD-i
  10. "How can papers afford to give away DVDs?",, The BBC, 11 October 2005. Retrieved on 29 July 2007.


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