Tablet panels shipment exceeded notebooks'
It is obvious that tablets are more and more powerful and in many situation there's simply no need for the end user to buy a notebook. With the advent of dual-core processor they were powerful enough for s serious work, and four-core processors are cleary the final threat to notebooks. Without a serious change in paradigm, and we currently don't see it on the horizon, notebooks' fate is to slowly leave the market.
DisplaySearch state in its research: "The notebook PC supply chain has some slow-moving inventory impacting panel purchases, and panel shipments declined by almost 4 M units from September to October. Notebook PC panel buyers are limiting panel purchases in order to prepare new designs for the coming Windows 8 models. Tablet PC shipments soared to build inventory for the holidays, as well as for the many white-box tablet PCs emerging in China. Strong growth in tablet PCs for kids and education is also a factor, but could be a seasonal effect."
In any event, tablet PCs have been the hottest TFT LCD panel application this year, with higher-end technologies required to produce the panels and higher visual specifications, but also fast growing demand from the end market even at relatively high panel prices. With an expanding customer base for TFT LCD panel makers (Google, Amazon, Barnes & Noble were not customers a year ago but now they are purchasing many tablet PC panels), the fast growing tablet PC is having an impact on the production strategies of panel makers. ■