IKEA: the next big TV store?

Beginning this summer in Europe, the Sweden-based furniture store IKEA will sell televisions as "built-in feature[s] of their cabinets and other pieces." Hello, cinnamon buns and channel changers.

Jessica Gow/AP
LED TV and sound system integrated in the furniture are part of a mock-up for Swedish home furniture firm IKEA's venture into home electronics, shown to the press in Stockholm on April 16, 2012. The new furniture range, named UPPLEVA, the Swedish word for experience, integrates a LED TV, a sound system with wireless bass speakers, an internet connection and CD, DVD, and Blu-ray players are set to hit the market in June.

I’ll take some Swedish meatballs with that DVD Player. Ikea, everyone’s favorite warehouse of particleboard furniture, is going to start delivers consumer electronics to customers this summer starting with Europe.

You know when you go through the show rooms and see fake televisions perfectly nestled into an Ikea armoire? This time the TV is going to be real and for sale. According to Reuters, the Swedish furniture retailer is selling these electronics as a built-in feature of their cabinets and other pieces of furniture. Ikea has teamed up with TCL Multimedia, a Chinese electronics manufacturer, to create the devices.

Ikea’s “living room chief” Magnus Bodesson explained to Reuters that the furniture is designed to match electronics with its furniture, and to avoid messy cords. Hopefully this will mean Ikea has found electronics that won’t make your TV stand bow in the middle.

Ikea has not provided any outlook on whether the electronics’ prices will reflect Ikea’s otherwise low prices. Bodesson does, however, say that Ikea’s model allows the company to sell items at their lowest prices and is “convinced that this will be a really big success.” While electronics retailers are struggling, this could be Ikea’s opportunity to provide discounted electronics, while device-lovers can grab their wares online.

In any case, the furniture is bound to be popular with European collegians this summer. The line is set to arrive in five European cities by this June, then seven more in fall, finally reaching the rest of us in 2013.

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