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Dell Says Flat TV Not Competing with Other Makers
Mar 29, 2004
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Personal computer maker Dell Inc. is saying its flat-panel televisions are not intended to compete with traditional TV makers but to persuade users to move its PCs into their living rooms.

Dell CEO Michael Dell said he did not see its monitors as being in direct competition with those of Sharp Corp, the world's largest maker of liquid crystal display (LCD) TVs, because he regards them as multi-function displays, not just televisions.

"We see the role of the PC expanding quite a bit in the digital home as more content becomes digital, whether it's video, pictures or music," Mr. Dell told a news conference in Tokyo. "People are looking for the PC to be at the center of this experience, so larger displays are quite attractive."

Dell's entry into the Japanese LCD television market late last year created headlines and triggered concerns that it would be able to out-muscle traditional consumer electronics makers by replicating its success in PCs.
Dell is able to offer products at a discount to competitors because of its low-cost supply and distribution system and ability to sell directly to customers over the phone or on the Internet. The PC giant's 17-in LCD television sells for about 80,000 yen (approx. U.S. $755) its web site, while a similar-sized TV made by Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. sells at Japanese retailers for about 110,000 yen.
Dell also offers a 23-in and 30-in LCD televisions.

The shift into consumer electronics represents an effort by Dell to diversify into other segments of the information technology (IT) market.

Mr. Dell said he expects the company's PC business to grow 4 percent to 6 percent annually until the business year ending in January 2007, while its software and peripherals division will grow more than 30 percent a year.

"We have aggressive plans in software and peripherals sector as we enter new categories...in personal digital assistants (PDAs), printers, and network switches," said Mr. Dell, pointing to the business division that also includes LCD televisions.

Overall, the company sees its revenues growing at a pace of more 15 percent a year during the next 3 years. (Reuters)

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