It’s All Downhill for Rear Projection TVs as Flat Panels Take Over the Living Room, According to IDC

FRAMINGHAM, MA. – September 17, 2007 – Flat panel TV sales are soaring, sending rear projection televisions (RPTV) in the opposite direction – downhill. For an industry where width and picture quality matters, RPTVs lose out for their unappealing girth, poor viewing angles, grayish black levels, and expensive bulbs that have short life spans. Despite RPTV vendors' current efforts to improve upon form factor (slim depth) and video performance (LED and laser backlights), IDC believes the global RPTV industry is in a state of irreversible decline making way for all things flat panel.

In 2006, IDC says worldwide RPTV shipments totaled a little more than 2.5 million units. By 2011, however, IDC forecasts that total worldwide RPTV shipments are expected to have all but eroded away, to just under 30,000 units, with revenues at the $10 million mark by then. IDC expects the U.S. to account for the entire RPTV market in 2011, with the other markets having dropped out by the end of 2010.

"IDC believes the global RPTV industry has already seen its best days, and therefore not subject to speculation on what could return this market to its former glory," says Eric Haruki, research director of IDC's TV Markets and Technology. "What should be of concern to the surviving RPTV vendors, and their respective component suppliers, is whether any last minute and last ditch technology efforts will catch hold with the TV buying public and what will be the specific timeframe of this industry's demise."

This IDC study, Worldwide Rear Projection TV 2007–2011 Forecast and 2006 Vendor Shares: Flattened by Panels (IDC #208467), looks at the 2006–2011 worldwide market for RPTVs. It includes a market forecast from 2007 to 2011 split by region, technology, and screen size. Rear projection television (RPTV) vendors, both on a global level and in the United States, have seen their best days pass due to continued and hyperaggressive TV category competition from flat panels. While the RPTV category still offers buyers a compelling value combination of very large (60in.+) TV sizes with 1080p resolution at low price points, the total universe of buyers for this size is also very small.

About IDC

IDC is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 900 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 90 countries worldwide. For more than 43 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting www.idc.com .

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