Smaller HD Displays Will Be Coming Too

While all the attention (and apparently, consumer interest) centers on large flat-screen displays right now, researchers for NHK reportedly are also trying to shrink the size of pixels to bring HD to flat panels that are smaller than HD products currently being offered. The Japanese public broadcaster is working on today's plasma technology, as well as a relatively unknown one called FED (field emission display).

Working in tandem with plasma display maker Pioneer published reports say NHK has already successfully shrunk the pitch of plasma pixels to 0.3 millimeter, which is a third as big as of many of today's plasma sets. (Pixel "pitch" is the distance from the center of one pixel to the center of an adjacent pixel.) Decreasing the pixel pitch, in turn, allows the placement of increasingly higher definition quality (if not quite yet the equivalent of 1080i or 720p) on smaller displays.

Also, the changing definition of "small" is always relative: Analysts predict within several years that advances in pixel pitch technology will likely lead to plasma displays capable of showing HD video on displays as small as 26-inch diagonally. It was not too long ago that a screen size of more than two feet was considered a "large" TV set.