LCD equipment market grew 30% in 2008, but will fall 41% in 2009
The market for TFT-LCD equipment may have grown 30% in 2008, but it is expected to drop 41% in 2009, according to The Information Network.
Much of the decline will depend on capital equipment spending this year, the New Tripoli, PA-based market research company reported.
"Although LCD manufacturers have announced capex reductions of about 50% for 2009 in response to the global economic crisis, capex is a moving target subject to change throughout the year," Robert Castellano, president of the New Tripoli, PA-based market research company, said in a statement. "For example, in anticipation of a banner year in 2008, initial capex forecasts made in early 2008 called for an 86% increase. In fact, capex ended up growing only 13%."
On that, The Information Network estimated array processing equipment will decrease 41% in 2009, following the 30% increase in 2008.
The Information Network said it expects that large-size TFT-LCD panel growth will be buoyed by LCD TV sales this year, which were also up in 2008. Indeed, Austin-based DisplaySearch has separately reported today that annual LCD TV shipment results for 2008 as a whole were 105 million units, up 33% year over year. The positive results also pushed LCD TV sales past CRT TV sales for the first time on an annual basis and came as many consumers readied themselves for the 2009 switch digital TV switch.
Despite the DTV switch postponement from February to June, panels for LCD TVs are expected to continue their market growth in 2009. The Information Network forecasted 113.3 million panels will be sold for LCD TVs this year, up 20.5% from 94 million in 2008.
Panels for notebooks will grow slightly faster, up 26.6% to 177 million panels, while panels for monitors will decrease 17.0% in 2009 to 144.9 million units, according to the company's forecast.
“Panel makers are stringently controlling costs while improving the technology innovation at this time,” Castellano said. “While unit shipments of large-size panels will increase 6.5% to 448.1 million panels, equipment purchases will decrease 41%.”