DisplaySearch: Large-Area TFT LCD Shipments Flat in the Third Quarter


Shipments of large-area TFT LCD panels were 185.5 million in Q3’11, unchanged from Q2’11, but up 12% Y/Y. Revenues reached $19.2 billion, down 2% Q/Q and 11% Y/Y. According to the DisplaySearch Quarterly Large-Area TFT LCD Shipment Report, panel makers are targeting a very modest 2% growth in shipments for Q4’11, as downstream manufacturers and brands are expected to prepare for the holiday season. Revenues are not expected to grow, however, because panel prices are still not showing signs of a rebound.

LCD panel shipments in terms of units don’t say much at all. For example there could be 50 million 10-inch tablet LCD panel shipments in Q3’11 and 50 million 55-inch LCD TV panel shipments. Add them up and you get 100 million large-area TFT LCD panels shipped. To count the tablet LCD panels as equal to LCD TV panels is obviously wrong: in terms of diagonal size the LCD TV panel is 5.5 times larger.

The resulting total unit shipments have little meaning. Q3’11 large-area TFT LCD shipments were 185.5 million units. What does that mean? Not much, precisely because the sizes differ so greatly.

Area shipments as in square meters or square feet is a better more accurate metric, which is used by LG Display and Corning.