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DisplaySearch reports record large-area LCD sales and falling prices

Flat panel display research and consulting group DisplaySearch indicated in its Quarterly Large-Area TFT LCD Shipment Report that large-area (10in) panel shipments exceeded expectations in Q4 2004, rising 4 percent faster than forecasted to 38.7 million panels, up 15 percent quarter-over-quarter (Q/Q) and 29 percent year-over-year (Y/Y). For 2004, total large-area LCD module shipments grew 39 percent Y/Y to 138.5 million.

All applications enjoyed faster than expected growth in Q4'04, and results set new records as continued price reductions and strong seasonal demand accelerated unit growth. LCD TV modules rose 23 percent Q/Q rather than the 11 percent forecasted to a record 3.8 million panels; notebook modules grew 16 percent Q/Q rather than 13 percent to a record 13.5 million panels; and LCD monitors jumped 14 percent Q/Q rather than 11 percent to a record 20 million panels. Despite the strong unit growth, revenues dropped 4 percent Q/Q and 2 percent Y/Y to $7.9 billion as ASPs fell 17 percent Q/Q and 24 percent Y/Y to $203. Blended LCD monitor and notebook module ASPs were down 30 percent and 27 percent Y/Y respectively.

Table 1 Large-Area LCD Shipment Share and Growth by Supplier (Area Basis)LCD SupplierMarket ShareQ4'04 GrowthQ3'04Q4'04Q/QY/YQ/Q LG.Philips LCD 19.8% 23.0% 38.9% 41.1% Samsung 21.5% 22.5% 25.2% 47.1% AUO 12.9% 14.9% 37.9% 71.3% CMO* 11.2% 11.6% 24.0% 67.5% CPT 6.9% 6.6% 14.4% 11.6% Other 27.6% 21.4% -21.4% 67.8% Total 100.0% 100.0% 23.7% 76.1% *Includes IDTech

LCD monitor module shipments recovered in Q4'04, rising 14 percent Q/Q after a 10 percent decline in Q3' 04 to earn record results. The LCD monitor module market continues to be dominated by 17in, 15in and 19in panels, which accounted for 55 percent, 23 percent and 17 percent of the market, respectively. Samsung also led the LCD monitor module market, holding a slight advantage over LPL, which was followed by AUO. In Q1 '05, LCD monitor module shipments are expected to enjoy another record quarter at 10 percent Q/Q and 25 percent Y/Y growth as LCD monitors gain share from CRT monitors.

LCD TV module shipments grew 23 percent Q/Q; 83 percent Y/Y to 3.8 million panels; and 13 percent Q/Q ASP declines. VGA at 20in remained the single most popular panel with a 22 percent share, followed by 15in XGA and 32in WXGA+. The 30in and larger share rose from 18 percent to 21 percent. Samsung also led in LCD TV module shipments with a 20 percent share, followed by LPL and CMO, which shared the No. 2 spot. Sharp dropped to No. 4. In Q1 '05, LCD TV module shipment growth is expected to slow to 2 percent on seasonal weakness, up 66 percent Y/Y.

Although Samsung led the notebook PC, LCD monitor and LCD TV markets, LPL led on an area basis, holding a slight 23 percent to 22.5 percent advantage supported by capacity additions to three different fabs. The top four suppliers all gained share.

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