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Toshiba can't get 13" up to demand - ooh err

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Toshiba is warning that severe price hikes and product shortages will hit the TFT market this year. The worst affected will be the popular 13.3" screen, UK resellers were told last week. The Japanese vendor said this size would suffer a "severe price rise and shortage." Prices for the larger 14.1" screen will also go up, the 12.1" will see a "severe" price rise, and the 10.4" TFT screens an "incremental" price rise. A source told The Register that the channel would be hit in terms of supply, but not in terms of pricing. "Consumers will not accept price rises, so the vendors will have to soak them up," he said. Steve Crawley, Toshiba product marketing manager, confirmed: "There will be a shortage of product, especially the 13" screens, over the next six months. But resellers and consumers will not see a price rise - this industry wouldn’t stand for it." According to Crawley, regular price decreases will not be as frequent or as steep as in the past to cope with the problem. "It’s the worst of both worlds in the TFT screen market at the moment – diminishing supply and increasing demand," he said. "How hard resellers are hit depends on which vendor they use. We hope our resellers won’t be affected too much." The shortage has resulted partly from the growth in the notebook market, but also from the increasing applications for TFT screens. It is taking off in desktops, and can be found in car navigation systems, small TVs and cameras. In addition, the Asian economic slump caused many vendors to put their factories on hold. Toshiba said all 120 of its UK resellers and 4,000 indirect dealers had been warned of the shortages. It said it was treating the problem very seriously, and ramping up production in its factories. ® See also: Shortage of screens to push up notebook prices Flat screen monitors will poison the planet

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