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Just try explaining LCD to your grandmother now

Panasonic, the leading retailer of plasma screen televisions, just launched major marketing plans to position plasma TVs over its series of LCD’s in order to boost plasma sales.  Panasonic, already on its ninth generation of plasma screen televisions, says that if they market their LCDs as much as they do their plasmas, they would have to increase the funding for overcoming problems with that technology. 

Also, with LCD sales dropping , Panasonic sees more benefit by only offering smaller sizes ranging from 23 to 32 inches.  Increasing size also means increasing product quality on the LCDs.  Panasonic has a major LCD brand, but the company does not have capabilities to produce LCD substrates on its own.

Sony, on the other hand, is putting up a fight after giving up on plasma television manufacturing.  Sony’s television market heavily relies on the LCD technology and is not backing down from the its plasma screen competitors.  The company has even set out a campaign of newspaper and magazine ads throwing out challenges to any plasma competitor.  Sony wants to show, with the HD challenge, that basic in home variables will effect the picture quality on any plasma screen television. 

The biggest variables Sony is claiming is lighting in regards to reflection in the screen and supposed leakages of plasma, which have been proven to not occur.  However, Sony’s claims to screen burn ins, which the company tests on Panasonics plasma screens, have been largely disproven on new screens.

Sony has had a three year partnership with Samsung LCD, the largest LCD manufacturer in the world.

According to the NPD group, the market on LCDs and plasma screen TVs doubled in 2006 from 2005.  The market for tube televisions on the other hand,  dropped by more than half, from 46 percent to 21 percent.  Tube television sales are taking the hard hits from the increase of LCD and plasma sales in 2006.

If trends continue, plasma screens may very well outsell LCDs in the near future.  Sony’s SXRD, the new liquid crystal on silicon technology, the market is up in the air for 2007. 




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