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Shipments of stereoscopic 3D TV panels continue to grow both quarter-over-quarter as well as year-over-year, according to market tracking firm NPD DisplaySearch. Manufacturers of panels and actual HDTVs expect sales of stereo-3D TV-sets to grow even more significantly in the fourth quarter of 2011 and in 2012.

Shipments of stereo-3D (S3D) LCD TV panels reached 6.6 million units in Q3 2011, an increase of 27% growth QoQ. The pattern retarder type and shutter glass type are growing by 34% and 23%, respectively. According to a recent NPD DisplaySearch report, panel makers are targeting very strong 30% growth in 3D LCD TV panel shipments for Q4 2011. Downstream manufacturers and brands are continuously promoting 3D, and end-user awareness and interest are growing. In Q3 2011, 3D TV panel penetration in total LCD TV panel shipments reached 12%.

“The TFT LCD industry has been in oversupply for six consecutive quarters, which has influenced the price premium for 3D panels. While there are still many questions about the lack of 3D content and services, as well as end-users’ needs, LCD TV panel makers have been strongly promoting 3D through lower prices and the introduction of new, cost-effective technologies,” noted David Hsieh, vice president, Greater China market for NPD DisplaySearch.

While LCD TV panel shipments did not grow in Q3 2011, 3D panel shipment growth was healthy, and panel makers are targeting 30% QoQ growth for Q4 2011.

According to NPD DisplaySearch estimates based on panel makers’ shipment targets, 3D LCD TV panel shipments will reach 21.5 million units in 2011, with 3D penetration in LCD TV panels of 10% (4% pattern retarder type and 6% shutter glass type). Furthermore, with the launch of a series of newly developed low-cost 3D solutions, panel makers are targeting 20% 3D penetration in LCD TV panels by Q3 2012. This level of 3D TV penetration may lead to more content availability.

In addition to 3D TV, panel makers are aggressively promoting 3D monitor panels, especially for consumer entertainment PC and game markets. In 3D LCD monitors, pattern retarder makers are more aggressive than shutter glass makers. Panel makers are targeting shipments of more than 1.5 million per quarter from Q2 2012 onward. This is up from 250 thousand units in Q3 2011.

Tags: Stereo 3D, HDTV, Stereo-3D

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