LCD monitor prices will drop by almost half, and sales of flat panels are set to outstrip those of CRT monitors, a study claims

Flat-panel production costs will drop, and industry observers believe these savings will be passed on to customers in what is a price-driven market, according to DisplaySearch’s annual LCD Monitor Strategy Report.

The report predicts that the average panel-price per diagonal inch could fall by up to 40 per cent between 2001 and 2006. Manufacturing costs for larger monitors also show signs of decline.

The company also predicts that flat-panel monitor shipments will overtake those of CRT (cathode ray tube) monitors in 2004.

The 950-page report indicates that LCD monitor shipments will grow at a compound annual rate of 49 per cent from 2001 to 2006, reaching 113 million units – and an 82 per cent share of the desktop monitor market. Revenue from sales is expected to overtake those of CRT in 2002, with unit sales expected to overtake in 2004. DisplaySearch predicts that LCD monitors will outsell their CRT counterparts 5:1 in 2006.

The market changes are driven by increased investment in TFT LCD manufacturing facilities, which DisplaySearch describes as "resulting in nearly 400 per cent growth in TFT LCD capacity from 2001 to 2006".