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Robert Silva

Panasonic May End Plasma TV Product Line in 2014

By October 9, 2013

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In 2013, I reported that Panasonic was planning to halt Plasma TV R&D and production before the end of that year (which ended up proven to be erroneous), but now, indications are resurfacing that the Japan-based consumer electronics giant may indeed close its last remaining Plasma TV production facility and cease production of the once-popular sets sometime in 2014.

It must be noted that, so far, that source of the reports is an unnamed person from Panasonic that is closely involved with their TV division, but the Panasonic Corporation has not officially confirmed (or denied) the information. However, with the current state of the TV manufacturing industry, it is not totally surprising that Panasonic may be finalizing such an action.

Such a move would leave Korea-based LG and Samsung as the last remaining manufacturers that still have Plasma in their TV product lines, and if Panasonic is out-of-the-picture, LG and Samsung may reconsider their own commitment to the technology. Currently, the two top-rated Plasma TVs are the Samsung F8500 and Panasonic ZT60 series sets.

Just as I stated previously, when reporting on last year's false alarm, I feel that Plasma TVs provide great option for consumers. First off, they are priced less than LCD and LED/LCD TVs when comparing equivalent screen sizes and features. Also, unless you want to spend $10,000 and up on one of the curved screen OLED TVs, Plasma TV provide the best black level and motion response available on a TV. On the other hand, Plasma TVs consume more energy and don't look as good in a well-lit room as most LCD or LED/LCD TVs.

My suggestion, if you are at all considering the purchase of a Plasma TV, this Christmas and Winter Holiday shopping season may the perfect chance to get one a really great price.

For more on this developing story, read the report from Reuters and Businessweek. Stay tuned as more information becomes available - perhaps something official will be announced before, or at, the upcoming CES in January.

For more information and perspective, read my comprehensive Guide to Plasma TVs.

UPDATE 10/31/13: Panasonic Officially Confirms End Of Plasma TV Product Line. Follow Me On Twitter and Facebook

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