It’s increasingly likely that Toshiba is set to follow Sony’s example and bail out of the declining Plasma market. The company is set to move to LCD and SED television systems by mid 2005.

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Toshiba is said to be planning to instead focus on surface conduction electron emitter display (SED) panels for flat panel televisions with 40-inch or larger screens.

Mid next year full-scale production of SED television sets, which it jointly developed with Canon will start, with Toshiba <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = “urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags” />Australia likely to be the distributor in Australia, according to reports.

A company jointly established by Toshiba and Hitachi and other firms will mass-produce display panels for liquid crystal televisions. A Toshiba executive has said that with the company planning to concentrate on marketing SED and flat-panel television sets, it was inevitable that Toshiba would downsize its plasma display panel television business and eventually retreat from the market.

Toshiba has not marketed new plasma display panel television products in Japan since about halfway through last year.