Panasonic to Exit Plasma TV Business by March 2014
October 9, 2013 10:30 AM
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Workers in the division will be reassigned
In previous years, plasma technology was very popular with consumers that demanded large-screen televisions. However, as LCD technology became cheaper and image quality improved, the demand for plasma TVs has dwindled dramatically.
A rumor surfaced in March of this year that Panasonic would be
exiting the plasma television market
. That exit has now been confirmed according to sources that claim to be familiar with the company’s plans. The sources claim that Panasonic will leave the plasma television panel market by the end of March 2014.
Panasonic has continued to eliminate areas of its business that have performed poorly (as witnessed by its
recent exit from the consumer smartphone market
). Plasma televisions accounted for less than 6% of global shipments in 2012 compared to 87% for LCD TVs.
Sony, Panasonic, and Sharp combined for less than 20% of the worldwide flat-panel TV market by revenue. Samsung has 27.7% of the overall market while LG has 15%.
sources also tipped that the several hundred workers that are currently employed at Panasonic in the plasma television operation will be moved to other divisions within the company.
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RE: Too bad
10/10/2013 2:36:47 AM
Burn-in hasn't been a problem for a decade. Image retention is something that happens with both plasmas and LCDs, and I've had
more IR issues with LCD monitors than plasma.
Saying that plasma sets need to be broken in mostly comes from the same group of overly obsessed people who also recommend doing the same with speakers and headphones. Break-in isn't needed with a plasma, just start using it like normal. Burn-in has been FUD and ignorant nonsense for years.
The main reason plasmas are unpopular is marketing, plain and simple. Why should a store promote a plasma with superior image quality in every single way when they can fleece the customer for hundreds or even thousands more selling them an LCD, even if it looks worse?
As usual, people are being fooled into buying the inferior technology by salesmen who don't have their interests in mind.
People who buy LCDs are mostly those who do what salespeople and marketing tells them. There are the edge cases who would like to have a plasma but their room is incredibly bright all the time, so an LCD makes more sense.
People who seek out plasmas actually know the differences and understand what makes for a superior picture. LCDs can look nice but they are fundamentally inferior in every way, full-stop. When we're talking about black levels, contrast, motion smoothness, input lag, color depth, and color reproduction, plasma decisively wins all the way.
The band-aids LCD requires like local dimming and motion interpolation adds cost to the set, input lag, artifacts like halos, and it still doesn't match up in quality to a cheaper plasma.
But hey, 240hz, motion smoothing, LED backlighting, and local dimming sure
good on a spec sheet, right? More "features" should mean a better product, but as usual the more you fill up a brochure or box with bulletpoints the worse it actually is.
RE: Too bad
10/10/2013 2:55:17 AM
Let's not forget the main drawbacks to plasma (other than what you call the "FUD" of burn-in":
1. Plasma weighs significantly more than LED/LCD.
2. Plasma uses significantly more power to operate.
3. Plasma generates a large amount of heat.
4. Plasma is more fraglile than LED/LCD (moving/installing requires kid-gloves).
5. Plasma has about half the life-span of LED/LCD.
So yes, LED/LCD doesn't have some of the "Awesome-Super-Duper" picture quality of plasma...but for me--and apparently over 80% of the market--the benefits of LED/LCD far outweigh the drawbacks.
RE: Too bad
10/10/2013 5:52:03 AM
1. Umm...so? Both can be picked up by one person with ease up to about 60" and both can be hung on the wall, so I fail to see how this is even slightly relevant.
2. You and I have different ideas about significant. My fairly new Plasma TV uses less power than a pair of light bulbs. You might be thinking of older plasmas (like 3+ years old), which burned a phenomenal amount of power.
3. It does generate some heat, but, there's no definition of "large amount" that applies here.
4. Actually, plasmas are tougher than LED/LCD TVs, because they require thicker protective glass on the front. There's no reason you can't make LCD/LEDs just as tough, it's just that they cost double what a plasma would.
5. This is demonstrably not true. If you go off the half-life of the panel/back-light, last time I looked plasmas were at 120,000 hours and LCDs were at 60,000. LED-backlit LCDs at 100,000. However this is an irrelevant metric, as no TV you buy will last even half of this time (even the paltry 60,000 hours of CCFL LCDs is over 20 years (at 8 hours of TV watching a day). Good quality modern equipment will last about seven years, regardless of which type you go for.
RE: Too bad
10/10/2013 11:17:18 AM
1. Glad I'm not playing catch with my plasma TV then!
2. The operating cost of a plasma vs LCD is about $24/year. OMG, THE SAVINGS!
3. Good thing I'm not sleeping on it?
4. I would be just as careful with a plasma as with any other TV, this is a ridiculous statement.
5. Which means it'll last about...15-20 years...uh ok? I'll want to upgrade to OLED well before that so it's a non-issue.
It's truly unfortunate that uneducated and/or non-caring masses of people shopping at Walmart buying their BIG ASS CHEAP LCDs with gray blacks and cartoon colors are forcing true value and PQ off the market. At least Samsung is making damn good plasmas too, so hopefully they'll keep the torch lit.
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