The consumer video display market in India is heating up in 2008. The growth in the liquid-crystal display (LCD) and plasma color television segment is motivating manufacturers to beef up their production facilities. Nearly 400,000 LCD and plasma TVs were estimated to have been sold in India in 2007—and twice as many are expected to be sold in 2008.
These products, however, continue to be beyond the reach of average middle-class Indian families because of the high price tags. Not surprisingly, many manufacturers are looking at setting up manufacturing facilities in the country in a bid to reduce costs and make their products more affordable. One of the companies exploring this strategy is Hitachi Home Electronics Asia, which conducted a study of the feasibility of establishing a manufacturing base in India. The company already claims to have a 4% share of the LCD TV market and a 15% share of the plasma TV market.
Other players, too, are gearing up to play in the LCD/plasma TV field. According to industry watchers, Samsung is targeting worldwide volumes of 20 million flat-screen displays in 2008. While India is part of its global plans, India’s nascent market will be a small contributor toward these sales.
LG Electronics, which has taken the lead in this category, has drawn up plans to launch a 52-in. high-definition TV with a built-in Wi-Fi system enabling consumers to stream video and other content from a home computer. The company has also finalized plans to launch a model with a 1080-pixel LCD screen designed to nick the problem of temporarily frozen screens and jerky visuals when receiving fast-streaming content.