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Culture

LCD TVs keep flying off shelves

Worldwide shipments of LCD televisions surged to 1.3 million units in the fourth quarter of 2003.

Worldwide shipments of LCD (liquid crystal display) televisions surged to 1.3 million units in the fourth quarter of 2003, up 23 percent from the third quarter, according to research released Thursday from iSuppli/Stanford Resources. The market research firm said plasma TV shipments rose 5 percent quarter over quarter to 358,449 units, and overall TV set shipments hit 44.7 million units, up 12 percent from the third quarter. Most televisions shipped in the quarter were traditional CRT (cathode-ray tube) models. The flat-panel TV market--made up of LCD and plasma televisions--will continue to grow in the first quarter because of increased availability, declining prices and consumer interest, iSuppli/Stanford Resources said. PC companies such as Gateway have begun selling flat-panel televisions.

Demand for LCD televisions contributed to a supply crunch last year for LCD panels, which also are used in desktop monitors and notebook screens. That shortage is expected to ease up.