Panasonic is shutting down its only dedicated plasma TV manufacturing plant in Shanghai, China, marking the total defeat of the technology by the LCD competition in the consumer market.
The two technologies were in a dog fight in the last decade, but somehow LCD got the upper hand. While LCD is now the dominant technology, TV industry players - including set vendors and panel suppliers - have been trying to sell users the idea that the age of the even more amazing OLED technology is forthcoming. The reason is obvious - to promote growth in a TV market where LCD growth is already slowing.
Indisputably, OLED offers better picture quality than LCD. But isn't it also the case that plasma was touted as having better picture quality, such as true black, than LCD? So, obviously picture quality cannot be the sole winning factor in the TV race.
In these days of bad economy, price seems to be a decisive factor though not the only one. The OLED TVs that Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics are launching are expected to carry prohibitive prices. OLED TV prices need to fall to levels comparable to LCD TVs before they can be a real compeition in the consumer market. Until then, LCD will continue dominating the market.