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The desktop LCD monitor market has taken a hit in value due to rapidly eroding prices, according to research from US-based Stanford Resources. Stanford blames the lingering Asian economy crisis, slow growth in the notebook market and continued low volume demand for desktop LCDs on the low market value. Samsung monitor product marketing manager Aaron Fright confirmed that market value is at a low at the moment but denied that flat screen makers are taking financial hits as a result. "There is massive price erosion," said Fright, "and there is definitely more competition. A 14-inch desktop TFT two years ago would have cost £2,000. Now it costs £800." Fright added that the market value would increase next year as more users start to demand higher spec products such as 17 and 18-inch panels. "The desktop flat screen is no loss leader," said Fright. "It has become a high revenue generator. For example we have just signed a deal to supply Reuters with potentially 20,000 units a year." The Stanford report, Flat information Displays, suggests that the FPD market will total 2.2 billion units in 1998 for a total value of $13.8 billion, rising to 2.7 billion units and $25.9 billion in 2004.

Much of the growth is dependent on Plasma, which will be a high value screen for the foreseeable future, according to the report which added that the introduction of higher spec desktop LCDs should restore margin for the monitor manufacturers.

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