LG Electronics declares withdrawal from PDP TV business, PDP TV to disappear in history after 15 years

Seo Hyeong-seok Oct 29, 2014

Will focus competences on OLED?LCD TV

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On the 28th, LG Electronics announced the termination of its plasma display panel (PDP) TV business as of the 30th of next month. Following Samsung SDI’s announcement of withdrawal from PDP business in July, LG Electronics’ decision has left China’s Changhong to be the only company in the global PDP TV market.

LG Electronics held a board meeting on the same day where it resolved on withdrawal from PDP TV business and submitted the related documents to Financial Supervisory Service. As for the reasons of business withdrawal and action plans for the future, LG Electronics specified ‘decreasing demand’ and ‘concentration of competencies on OLED LCD TV’ respectively, and thus clarified that its TV production and sales strategies for the future are with organic light-emitting diode (OLED) and LCD.

The industry regarded LG Electronics’ withdrawal from PDP TV business as a ‘scheduled move.’ In relation to the company’s withdrawal from PDP TV business, President Ha Hyeon-hoe of LG Electronics HE (Home Entertainment) Division spoke publicly in August that it was being discussed, and thus raised publicity on this subject. In fact, LG Electronics did not release any new products this year after it had launched two PDP TV models last year.

Having started PDP TV business in Korea in 1999, LG Electronics, together with Samsung Electronics, has been leading the global PDP TV market with ‘Xcanvas’ brand. In line with the trend of digital switchover, LG Electronics contributed to shifting TV market from cathode ray tube TV to flat screen TV with clear picture quality characteristic of PDP and low price of the products.

However, as skepticism was raised about PDP, such as for its excessive power consumption and heating as well as short lifespan, PDP handed over the position as a next-generation panel to OLED and LCD after the mid-2000s. LG Electronics has established a policy to continuously provide after-sale support for PDP TV products sold in the market even after its withdrawal from the business.

It will be difficult to find PDP TV in the market as all major TV makers, with an exception of Changhong, are receding from PDP TV business and are focusing on OLED, LCD and quantum dot. Display Search, a market surveyor, predicts that the scale of PDP TV market will fall from 5.4 million this year to 1.8 million next year and the market will eventually disappear by around 2017.

Seo Hyeong-seok | hsseo@etnews.com

LG전자, PDP TV 철수 선언…"15년 만에 역사 속으로"

OLED?LCD TV로 역량 집중 한다

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LG전자가 다음달 30일부로 플라즈마디스플레이패널(PDP) TV 사업을 종료한다고 28일 밝혔다. 지난 7월 삼성SDI의 PDP 철수 선언에 이은 LG전자의 이번 결정으로 세계 PDP TV 시장에는 중국 창홍만 남게됐다

LG전자는 이날 이사회를 열어 PDP TV 사업철수를 결의한 뒤 금융감독원에 관련 공시를 제출했다. 철수 사유로는 ‘수요 감소’를 들었으며, 향후 대책으로는 ‘OLED?LCD TV로의 역량집중’을 명시해 향후 TV 생산?판매 전략이 유기발광다이오드(올레드, OLED)와 LCD에 있음을 분명히했다.

업계에서는 LG전자의 PDP TV 사업 철수를 ‘예정된 수순’으로 봤다. 하현회 LG전자 HE(홈엔터테인먼트) 사업본부장(사장)이 지난 8월 공개 석상에서 PDP TV 사업 철수에 대해 “논의 중”이라 밝히며 철수 여부를 공론화했고, LG전자도 지난해 마지막 PDP TV 2종을 출시한 뒤 올해 신제품을 내놓지 않았기 때문이다.

LG전자는 지난 1999년 국내 PDP TV 사업을 시작하며 ‘엑스캔버스(Xcanvas)’ 브랜드로 삼성전자와 함께 세계 PDP TV 시장 양강체제를 구축한 바 있다. 디지털 전환 붐을 타고 저렴한 가격과 PDP 특유의 선명한 화질을 앞세워 TV 시장을 브라운관에서 평판으로 옮기는데도 일조했다.

하지만 과다한 전력 소모와 발열, 짧은 수명 등 PDP에 대한 회의론이 불거지며 2000년대 중반 이후 OLED, LCD 등에 차세대 패널 자리를 넘겨주었다. LG전자는 사업 철수 이후에도 시중에 판매된 PDP TV 제품에 대해서는 지속적으로 사후지원(AS)을 제공할 방침이다.

PDP TV는 앞으로 찾아보기 어려울 전망이다. 현재 주요 TV 제조사 중 창홍을 제외한 모든 업체가 PDP TV에서 손을 떼고 OLED, LCD, 퀀텀닷 등에 주력하고 있기 때문이다. 시장조사업체 디스플레이서치도 PDP TV 시장규모가 올해 540만대에 이어 내년 180만대로 떨어진 뒤 2017년 시장에서 소멸할 것이라 예측한 바 있다.

서형석기자 | hsseo@etnews.com

LG Electronics declares withdrawal from PDP TV business, PDP TV to disappear in history after 15 years

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