- Egypt rights center raided, 2 Mubaraks acquitted
- New Mexico Supreme Court rules same-sex marriage constitutional
- Blame Bush: 5 years later, that’s still the mantra, pollsters find
- Dutch prostitutes demand same retirement benefits as soccer stars
- John McCain to Harry Reid: I’ll ‘kick the crap’ out of you
- Dogs that talk: Researchers seek $10K for ‘No More Woof’ technology
- 1,000 firefighters called to battle stubborn Big Sur wildfire
- Black Friday brouhaha: Millions of Target shoppers hit by credit card theft
- Britain orders airplane to rescue citizens from violent South Sudan
- Mega Millions winner emerges as Georgia mom, in ‘disbelief’
Sony, Panasonic tying up in advanced TV displays
Question of the Day
TOKYO (AP) - Long-time Japanese rivals Sony Corp. and Panasonic Corp. are working together to develop next-generation TV panels called OLEDs in a reversal of decades of rivalry as they try to catch up with South Korea's Samsung Electronics.
The companies said in a joint statement Monday they will share core technologies to develop OLED, or organic light-emitting diode, panels. They are aiming for low-cost mass production by 2013.
Both Sony and Panasonic have posted big losses after falling behind Samsung Electronics Co. and other Asian rivals in TVs. The joining of forces marks a departure from a long rivalry and highlights the pressure that Japanese manufacturers face to catch up with Samsung in TVs.
Samsung is planning to start selling TVs with big OLED screens later this year. OLEDs use a different technology than liquid crystal displays and deliver very clear, vivid imagery.
Fitch Ratings said the Sony-Panasonic tie-up underlined "the fall of Japanese tech companies," as such a tie-up was previously "unthinkable."
"Japanese OLED investment is better late than never," said Alvin Lim, associate director at Fitch. "While consumer demand for OLED is still unproven, without investment Japanese manufacturers could become stranded in the TV market should this technology become mainstream."
Sony was the first in the world to sell an OLED TV, with an 11-inch model in 2007, but it wasn't a strong seller, partly because of its small size and high price.
Sony buys liquid-crystal displays from other manufacturers. It ended its joint-venture with Samsung to make LCDs earlier this year as panel prices fell and it became more cost-efficient to buy from other makers.
Both Sony and Panasonic reported record losses for the fiscal year ended March 31. They took a battering from plunging prices and a soaring yen, which puts the Japanese at a disadvantage against the Koreans in price competitiveness.
Analysts say the Japanese could also be hit by Apple Inc.'s foray into TVs that may come in a couple of years. Apple has already eroded the profitability of the Japanese electronics makers with its hit iPod, iPhone and iPad devices.
By Michael P. Orsi
Edward Snowden should declare his patriotism in court
- Citing 'unfair system,' Obama commutes sentences for 8 crack offenders
- Homeland Security helps smuggle illegal immigrant children into the U.S.
- Gov't wasted $30 billion on 'pillownauts,' crystal goblets -- buying human urine!
- Bill Gates: The Secret Santa disguised as a 'friendly fellow' on Reddit
- Obamacare 'pajamas boy' gets roundly mocked
- Armed response, not restrictive gun laws, brought swift end to school shooting
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'
- U.S. Army mulls wiping out memory of Robert E. Lee, 'Stonewall' Jackson
- Sebelius adds another Obamacare exemption
- BOLTON: Nero in the White House
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Southern Fried Politics from the Lens of a Persian-American Millennial
All of the world’s problems, solved on your back porch
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.
Extraordinary day at Redskins Park
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow