Shipments of liquid-crystal-display (LCD) computer monitors grew only 4 percent on rising demand in the slow second quarter, as expected, but recent hikes in panel component prices may hinder further growth in the second half of this year, industry watcher Display-Search said in its latest report released on Friday.
The world's major LCD-monitor vendors shipped 23.6 million monitors for desktop computers in the April to June quarter, up from 22.7 million units in the first quarter, according to the report.
This represents a 36-percent jump year on year, the researcher said.
"However, slight month-on-month panel component price increases for 15-inch and 17-inch panels may stunt growth in the second half of 2005," DisplaySearch said, without elaborating.
DisplaySearch said LCD monitor vendors usually hike prices in the quarter after panel component prices rise, in response to higher costs.
Prices for LCD panel components rose for three or four straight months, or from US$2 to US$5, but prices for mainstay 15-inch and 17-inch monitors fell by nearly 7 percent, according to the report.
The price of 17-inch LCD monitors slid by US$21 to US$285 per unit in the second quarter, from US$306 during the first three months of the year, it said.
The price decline caused a slight 1.3-percent quarterly drop in the total revenues of monitor makers to US$7.7 billion from US$7.8 billion in the first three months of this year, according to DisplaySearch's statistics.
The trend of more computer users changing to larger displays may prevent revenues from weakening further, the researcher said.
During the second quarter, 15-inch LCD monitors dropped to 17.2 percent of the total monitors shipped, compared with a 3 percent gain recorded in the 19-inch category to 21.6 percent, according to the report.
The shipping share of the most popular 17-inch LCD monitors was unchanged at around 58 percent, it said.
But lower LCD-monitor prices have pushed up the penetration rate of LCD monitors to another record high of 65 percent last quarter, compared to less than 50 percent a year ago.
The ranking for the world's top five LCD-monitor vendors was unchanged last quarter, with Dell Inc continuing to lead with a stable market share of 20 percent.
Hewlett-Packard Co and Korea's Samsung Electronics took the No. 2 and No. 3 spots, followed by Taiwan's Acer Inc and LG Electronics Inc in Korea.
Europe, the Middle East and Africa remain the biggest markets for LCD-monitor vendors, consuming around 40 percent of monitors produced in the quarter ended in June, according to DisplaySearch.