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Flat-panels to kill off rear-projection TV sales by 2011

A new study by the IDC group sees rear-projection TV sales dropping to near zero by 2011.

Rear-projection TV
Rear-projection TV: heading toward extinction. CNET

Will rear-projection TV sales plunge to near zero within the next 48 months? That's what a new study from IDC Group claims. With ever larger plasma and (especially) LCD flat-panel HDTVs becoming ever more affordable, IDC sees sales of RPTV sets--those utilizing DLP and LCoS microdisplays--dropping to under 30,000 units by 2011. That's a dramatic drop from the peak of 3.51 million sold in 2004 (according to the CEA).

None of this is shocking news, of course--the trend toward flat panels has been increasingly irreversible as large plasmas and LCD screens continue to break key price-point barriers. For the consumer, however, it's the best news of all: LCD and plasma prices continue to drop, and even larger rear-pro TVs will approach fire-sale prices as they have their last hurrah.

SOURCE: CNBC video interview--Becky Quick discusses the IDC report with Ruben Roy, Pacific Crest Securities semiconductor analyst, and Eric Haruki, IDC research director.