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Rumor: Panasonic plans to exit LCD-TV market

17 Oct 2012 | Rasmus Larsen |

Panasonic plans to exit the LCD-TV market. They will retool their LCD-TV factory to handle production of medium-sized LCD panels for Apple’s iPad, Japanese Diamond Online reports.

Update: Reuters now reports that Panasonic also plans reduce plasma TV panel output. Panasonic reduced their plasma TV production earlier this year so it is unclear if Reuters reports on old news or if Panasonic will reduce output further.

Update 2: Official update from Panasonic who says that they have no plans to exit the LCD or plasma TV markets but output will be reduced and new LCD segments such as the tablet segment are explored. Panasonic will source LCD-TV panels from other manufacturers for specific Panasonic LCD-TVs in the future.

Panasonic to exit LCD TV market

Panasonic made a big bet on LCD-TVs this year, while also focusing on their traditional plasma TV business. However, the LCD-TV strategy has not been as successful as expected, it seems.

Panasonic DT50
Panasonic made a big bet on LCD-TVs this year but sales have not lived up to expectations, apparently

It is reported that Panasonic plans to stop LCD-TV production and retool their Himeji LCD plant. Panasonic aims to produce medium-size LCD panels for mobile devices, specifically the iPad, sources say. Panasonic has allegedly already supplied prototype high-resolution LCD panels to Apple who seems to be satisfied with the quality. Panasonic’s Himeji plant is one of the most advanced in the industry.

Panasonic Himeji
Panasonic plans to retool the Himeji plant in order to produce medium-sized LCD panels for mobile devices

Earlier this year, Panasonic reduced plasma TV output as a result of a shrinking TV market. The reported plan to exit the LCD-TV market could signal a shift in Panasonic’s TV strategy - maybe even a switch to OLED TVs.

We need to underline that even though Panasonic stops production of LCD-TV panels they can still source panels from other LCD suppliers and continue to sell LCD-TVs. FlatpanelsHD has been unable to confirm the rumors.

- Source: Diamond Online, Reuters

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