On April 24, 2008, Pioneer and Matsushita announced a comprehensive business alliance on PDP technology development and panel production. Pioneer will share its proprietary PDP-related technologies (and that means its KURO PDP technology) and Matsushita will absorb Pioneer’s PDP R&D team. Matsushita will be responsible for volume production of PDPs for the Panasonic and Pioneer brands. Matsushita brings the economy of scale needed to compete against LCD TVs and Pioneer brings some very special PDP technology. Pioneer’s KURO-line of PDP TVs have been hailed as one of the best in the industry for deep blacks and overall excellent front screen performance.
The two companies have many goals, among which are decreasing power consumption by two thirds by 2010, increasing front screen performance in the areas of contrast and reducing the thickness to less than one inch. Ken Morita, Senior Vice President at Panasonic AVC Networks Company boldly claimed that, “We are confident that we can develop a 42-inch PDP TV whose power consumption is 150 watts, equivalent to that of a 27-inch CRT TV. With a 100-inch PDP, we can reduce power consumption to a level comparable to today’s 42-inch PDP TV.”
Luminous efficacy, an extremely important term that indicate the the overall lighting efficiency that depends on how much of the input energy is converted into visible light. Currently, luminous efficacy for PDP TVs are hovering around 2.5 lm/W (lumens per watt). Matsushita plans to double that with its newly announced NeoPDP technology.
Matsushita is currently building its 5th PDP plant that will manufacture next-generation PDPs and is expected to commence production in May 2009. The NeoPDP technology that applies single-scan Full HD technology will reduce the cost of manufacturing substantially. In addition, new materials, processes, cell design and driving methods are expected to improve luminous efficacy 100%. The 5th plant that will be located in Amagasaki, Japan will be able to cut sixteen 42″ PDPs, double that of its current 4th plant. Matsushita also plans to increase the color gamut through its Digital Cinema Initiative (DCI) and improve contrast ratio to 30,000:1 with an enhanced real black driving method and new materials. Another advance that we can look forward to is 4K2K-compliant displays that sport a pixel format of 4096 x 2160.
Starting in 2009, Pioneer and Matsushita will use the same PDPs and the TVs will be differentiated by proprietary image processing and video expertise. This is the same condition under which Samsung and Sony competes in the LCD TV market. Both use the same LCD TV panel and then apply their own processing expertise and brand IDs. I can see Panasonic and Pioneer both succeeding in this type of structure.
[tags]Display Manufacturer, KURO, Luminous Efficacy, Matsushita, NeoPDP, PDP, PDP TV, Pioneer, Plasma Display Panel, Plasma, Plasma TV[/tags]