Reuters reported on Monday that Japanese electronics titan Sony
According to Reuters, which in turn cited Japan's Nihon Keizai Shimbun, Sony is considering quitting the plasma TV market next year in order to focus more on products for which it has a technological edge -- specifically, the manufacturing of LCD panels and sets, and rear-projection TVs. It's also worth pointing out that Sony's plasma division suffered a significant setback late last month when it ran into problems keeping up with demand for plasma sets in Europe. That's likely to hurt this quarter's results for the company's television business as a whole, which is currently losing money at the rate of a quarter billion dollars a year.
In a situation like that, Sony may be making the smart move by imitating European rival Philips
At the same time Sony is contemplating a retreat from plasma, China Daily.com reports that plasma TV leader Matsushita Electric
Most reports by industry analysts this year agree that, despite all the manufacturers' protestations that they have no intention of lowering prices, the retail cost of a plasma set has fallen by about 25% this year. This is just one more reason for Sony to exit this market. Meanwhile, rivals like Matsushita will be hoping that with Sony gone, they'll get a little breathing room and perhaps be able to slow the fall in prices a bit.
For more Foolish news and commentary on all things flat-panel, tune in to:
- Corning Calls It Right
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- LG.Philips: This Side Up
Fool contributor Rich Smith has no position in any of the companies mentioned in this article.