OLED is coming, but don’t hold off on buying a plasma or LCD

By Martin Vedris

SYDNEY, NSW: OLED promises to be the next big thing in TV with its ultra high contrast, no backlighting, energy efficiency, and amazing thinness, but if you’re waiting for it to replace plasma or LCD, especially in large screen sizes, you will be waiting a long time, according Panasonic Australia’s Paul Reid.

“At Panasonic, we don’t see a commercially viable OLED product selling in any volume before about 2014 or 2015,” said Panasonic Australia director – Consumer Electronics Group, Paul Reid. “And even then, the vast majority of flat panel TV volume will be in plasma and LCD.

“So I really think to spend too much time on OLED is very premature.”

Reid also said that Panasonic is scheduled to continue developing and releasing new plasma TV technologies.

“We have a road map for significant technical innovation in plasma for years and years to come. This year we launched our first generation of what we call NEO plasma, our next generation plasma technology. And I can tell you that next year we launch the second generation and the developments are accelerating; we’ll have blacker blacks again, better colour reproduction, thinner designs, larger sizes, better energy efficiency again. So the development in Panasonic plasma TV continues unabated.”

With the news that the Australian economy has all but recovered any losses it experienced through the recent Global Financial Crisis (GFC), interest rates are slated to go up again to curb potential inflation. Despite the GFC however, Panasonic continues to post record plasma TV sales.

“Last year, from a Panasonic point of view, we had record sales in plasma and this year — and I’m referring to the Japanese fiscal year of April to March 2010 — we’re forecasting around a 50 per cent increase on last year, off what was a record year,” said Reid. “So for us, plasma sales are absolutely booming.”

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