Shipments of 3D-capable large-area TFT LCD panels increased to 5.2 million units in Q2, growing by 124 per cent Quarter v Quarter. Shipments of 3D panels were primarily for LCD TVs, reaching 4.9 million units in Q2 2-11, 118 per cent Q/Q growth, and pushing the 3D penetration in LCD TV panels from 4.5 per cent in Q1 2011 to 9.3 per cent in Q2 2011. According to the DisplaySearch, panel makers are targeting 53 per cent growth in 3D LCD TV panel shipments for Q3 as both shutter glass and pattern retarder technologies are maturing and costs continue to fall.
“The LCD TV panel industry has been in oversupply for more than a year, and panel makers are motivated to develop new features like LED and 3D to increase value. Although there are still doubts about whether the market is ready for 3D, 3D penetration is increasing due to falling prices and the ability to produce panels.” noted David Hsieh, Vice President, Greater China Market, DisplaySearch. “3D is not only for high-end products; we are starting to see panel makers develop cost-effective 3D, such as 60 Hz refresh rate with signal simulation or lower frequency with blinking backlight units, which are targeted at affordability and will be critical in encouraging 3D adoption.”
In addition to TV, 3D monitor panel shipments are growing rapidly, from less than 80,000 units in Q1 2011 to more than 250,000 in Q2 2011, thanks to adoption in gaming and other special application monitors. The mainstream 3D technology currently used in desktop monitors is shutter glass, but pattern retarder and switched cell solutions are emerging rapidly too. Panel makers expect to double shipments in Q3 2011.
Volumes of 3D panels for notebook PCs are still relatively small, with less than 100,000 units shipped in Q2 2011. However, panel makers are promoting shutter glass, pattern retarder, and autostereoscopic solutions to the gamer and entertainment- focused notebook users. Shipments are expected to grow by 126 per cent in Q3 2011.
For LCD TVs, larger panel sizes are seeing faster penetration of 3D, as the benefits are clearer. In 40″ and larger LCD TV panel shipments, 3D penetration increased from 12.7 per cent in Q1 2011 to 21.7 per cent in Q2 2011. TV panel makers are aiming to reach 28.2 per cent in Q3 2011.