11.15.2006 12:00 AM
LCD Growth: Good News for Consumers, Bad for Makers
LCD TV global markets will grow by nearly 28 percent annually for at least the next three years, resulting in a market worth about $84 billion by 2010, according to recent projections from industry analyst iSuppli. Thus, by most definitions, LCD HD is a success that is accelerating. That's the good news.

However, warns iSuppli, CE manufacturers also face a losing battle against the inevitability of "creeping commoditization," where one brand of a certain type of product (as it becomes increasingly ubiquitous) begins to hold no great distinction in consumers' minds over any similar product, and, therefore, many people begin to base their purchases entirely on cosmetics and price points.

LCD TV revenues will finally exceed CRT (cathode ray tube) sales by the end of the current calendar year, and unit sales will top CRT shipments by 2009, iSuppli predicts.

Many 32-inch LCD monitors already have become commoditized, according to the analyst, with 40- and 42-inch sets following that path in the next year, despite manufacturers' best attempts to differentiate their products.

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