OCTOBER 2014 IN
RICK ASTER’S WORLD
A few years ago, plasma looked like the ultimate TV display, but advances in other technology have changed that. The major plasma TV manufacturers have dropped out of plasma display technology over the past year: Panasonic, Samsung, and now LG. There is plenty of inventory remaining, probably enough to last through next year, but that will effectively mark the end of the plasma TV era.
Plasma was brighter than early large-screen LCD displays, but improvements in LED backlight technology have closed the brightness gap while reducing the price and weight of LCD displays. The latest trend in televisions is high-resolution displays, and manufacturers want to focus their engineering on competing in high-resolution LCD displays. No one is sure that plasma display resolution can be improved by much, so manufacturers are reluctant to take on that challenge.
With LCD TVs getting lighter, the age of the TV stand may also be ending. Large-screen TVs will soon weigh less than 20 kilograms, making them easy for non-carpenters to hang on the wall. A few years hence, this difference in weight may be the only obvious difference between the old plasma TVs still in use and the current generation of technology.
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