Sat, Jul 30, 2005 - Page 10 News List

Santa likely to bring you a big TV, iSuppli predicts

By Amber Chung  /  STAFF REPORTER

Increasing production and falling prices for larger thin-film-transistor liquid-crystal-display (TFT-LCD) panels means that more consumers may find 40-inch to 42-inch (101.6cm to 106.7cm) LCD TVs under their Christmas trees this year, iSuppli Corp predicts.

Pricing for low-end LCD TV panels in the 40-inch to 42-inch range declined to US$950 this month, the first time it has fell below the threshold of US$1,000, while average pricing for 40-inch and 42-inch LCD TV panels fell to US$1,125, down 7.5 percent from US$1,216 last month, iSuppli said in a report released on Thursday.

"This could result in the availability of 40-inch to 42-inch value-branded LCD TVs at prices as low as US$2,500 by the fourth quarter, boosting sales of these sets during the all-important holiday season," the El Segundo, California-based research house said.

ISuppli predicted that the prices of all large LCD TV panels will keep falling in the coming months, with the average price for 30-inch to 32-inch LCD TV panels, for instance, decreasing to US$558 by the start of the holiday buying season in October, down from US$607 in June.

The present price cuts are being driven by panel suppliers who hope to accelerate consumers' adoption of LCD TVs, as TFT-LCD makers are boosting the output at their fifth, sixth and seventh-generation fabs designed to produce larger panels suited for TV sets, the report said.

The price reductions are expected to be particularly pronounced for the 40-inch and 42-inch panels because of the start of production at Samsung Electronics Corp's first seventh-generation fab, which is jointly operated with Sony Corp, it said.

The research house predicted worldwide shipments of LCD TV panels to shoot up by 87 percent to 18.8 million units this year, from 10 million last year.

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