Pioneer to stop producing plasma panels
Strategic shift expected to be announced on Friday
Recent claims that Pioneer is planning to get out of sub-46in plasma panel production in favour of sourcing them through a third-party may have only been the start of things. It’s now being said that the company is finalising plans to outsource the whole lot.
Last week, Japanese newspaper Asahi reported that Pioneer is looking to buy 46in and smaller plasma display panels from Matsushita Electric Industries, owner of the Panasonic brand, or from Hitachi.
A spokeswoman for Pioneer later confirmed that the company is reviewing its plasma display business because of sluggish sales performance.
Japanese publication Nikkei, citing company sources, today claimed that Pioneer is finalising plans to buy in all sizes of plasma panels and shut down one of its three plasma production sites in Japan this year.
Pioneer hasn't confirmed either claim yet.
All is likely to be revealed this Friday when, according to Pioneer's spokeswoman, the company’s president will announce a new business plan. The move is unlikely to see Pioneer exit from the market altogether given how long the company has been flying the flag for plasma TV technology.
Then again, rival plasma maker Fujitsu last year decided to end plasma production because of poor profitability. Pioneer already outsources LCD planel production, to Sharp.
Pioneer has been bleeding red ink for years
plasma is dead
ok, i'm talking from a purely technical perspective here. I'm not talking about the fuzzy warm feeling and color temperature and other subjective stuff.
Manufacturers of the panels HATE plasma.
- the tube is expensive to make ( yes it is still a TUBE ! . its got gas in it)
- the tube is heavy.
- needs high excitation voltages ( 80 to 140 volts )
- the driving electronics for such voltages produces a lot of heat.
the overall bill of material is a lot higher.
LCD is cheap. these days they 'print' lcd panels wth an injet like tehcnology. Two sheets of glass. seam weld them , add a drop of LC fluid , close entry point. attach row and column drivers , attach reflector / diffuser / attach light source ( LED's these days. CCFL is on its way out ) control electronics is 1 LSI chip that doesnt even get warm.
very easy to produce at a BOM cost ( Bill of material) that is 1/3 of a plasma ...
Plasma will stay for a while , but only for the very large displays.
@Anonymous, re: SED
I would also love to see SED. However, at the moment I believe Canon have locked horns with our old Texas based litigious friends Nano Proprietary who own the patent, and are miffed that Canon, who licenced it, have sub licenced it to Toshiba. There's been a big court battle going on for a while, during which the whole project has been mothballed.
Honestly? Due to Patent issues I don't ever envisage anyone will ever make SED TV's as if Nano Proprietary are being litigious with Canon, no one in their right mind will want to licence it from them as they won't want the hassle. Sad as that is, it will give OLED a lead in the manufacturing and maturity stakes, and I think we'll see the technology process skip SED entirely - talk about cutting off your own nose to spite your face!