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Press Releases
4K Penetration Surpassed 30% for First Time in 1Q17 LCD TV Panel Shipments, Says TrendForce

2017/04/24

Display

WitsView, a division of TrendForce, reports LCD TV panel shipments for this first quarter totaled 6016 million units, representing a drop of 107% compared with the prior quarter but also a year-on-year increase of 04% Looking at major trends in the TV panel market, the growing demand for 4K resolution is accompanying the steady increase in the average panel size Despite seasonal headwinds, first-quarter shipments of UHD (4K resolution) TV panels went up 05% sequentially to reach 20 million units for the first time ever and accounted for 333% of the total TV panel shipments Going into the second quarter, the TV panel demand is shifting from the 40- to 43-inch segment to the 55- to 65-inch segment “Prices in the 40- to 43-inch segment are too high for TV brands to create promotional offerings for China’s major sales events during the second quarter,” said Iris Hu, research manager of WitsView “Panels in the 55- to 65-inch segment on the other hand provide higher margins” Additionally, major international TV brands are aggressively positioning themselves in the 75-inch size segment With increasing market preference for larger sizes, shipments of TV panels for the second quarter is projected to record a small sequential growth of 1% in unit volume In terms of area, however, the growth over the first quarter is expected to be larger at 4% LGD retained first place in ranking for this first quarter while UHD penetration rates rose significantly in SDC’s and AUO’s shipments WitsView’s survey of TV panel suppliers for this first quarter shows LG Display (LGD) posted a 7% decline from last year’s fourth quarter with 1263 million units shipped LGD’s LCD TV panel shipments fell as the supplier adjusted the product mix for one of its Gen-85 fabs and allocated more of its production capacity to making OLED products The supplier also cut back on the production of monitor panels sized 215 inches wide and smaller and instead expanding production of monitor panels sized 238 inches wide and 27 inches wide This is also in response to monitor brands’ need for larger panels to raise their product margins In doing so, LGD also took away some of its Gen-85 capacity originally intended for TV panels Despite recording a noticeable decline, LGD was still first place in TV panel shipment ranking in this first quarter Against the prior three-month period, Innolux shipped 994 million units of TV panels this first quarter and registered a decline of 93% Demand for Innolux’s 395-inch products fell as TV brands reached their price limits for the mid-size segment While Innolux saw an increase in orders from Samsung Electronics for its 65-inch panels, the supplier was not able to significantly increase shipments for this size category due to low product yield rate BOE Technology (BOE) shipped about 941 million units this first quarter, amounting to a drop of 28% from the previous quarter Since September of 2016, BOE has been adjusting its product mix to increase the share of notebook panels at the expense of the 32-inch TV panels This has led to continuing decline in BOE’s TV panel shipments On the other hand, BOE significantly raised shipments of its 43-inch panels by 266% sequentially in the first quarter With its Gen-85 fab in Fouzhou, China, at the final preparation stage for mass production, BOE aggressively priced its 43-inch panels to entice TV brands TV panel shipments from China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSOT) fell 33% this first quarter compared with last year’s fourth quarter to come to 897 million units There was no increase in CSOT’s production capacity during the first quarter, and the supplier’s shipments were further affected by seasonality However, CSOT did enjoy a 15% sequential growth for its UHD products owing to strong demand from TV brands To increase the margins of their TV set lineups, brands are increasingly using the UHD feature Samsung Display (SDC) went from being second place in the ranking to fifth place between last year’s fourth quarter and this year’s first quarter This plunge was mainly attributed to the closure of the L7-1 fab in the final month of 2016 Consequently, the supplier’s TV panel shipments for the first quarter suffered a sequential decline of 276%, totaling just around 886 million units Though SDC had a very poor overall performance, the company was ahead of its competitors in the shipments of 75-inch TV panels, growing the volume by 30% sequentially in first quarter to reach 130,000 units Also, SDC’s recent overhaul of its manufacturing equipment has led to a large shipment expansion for large-size UHD panels SDC actually became the first panel maker to surpass 50% in UHD penetration for TV panel shipments during this first quarter UHD-resolution products accounted for 528% of SDC’s TV panel shipments for the period AU Optronics (AUO) shipped around 663 million units in the first quarter, a 67% drop versus the prior quarter While AUO has limited production capacity, the company manages to stay competitive by increasing shipments of large-size and niche products Thus, AUO posted a 38% sequential increase in shipments of 65-inch and larger panels Furthermore, the UHD penetration in supplier’s first-quarter TV panel shipments came to 407%, up from 36% in last year’s fourth quarter

Press Releases
TrendForce Reports Shipments of 65-Inch LCD Panels Grew 4% in February Over Prior Month Despite Fewer Work Days

2017/03/23

Display

A total of 1871 million units of large-size LCD panels were shipped worldwide this February, according to WitsView, a division of TrendForce Fewer work days in February delayed some shipment deliveries to March Furthermore, shipments of panels belonging to the medium-to-small sections of the size spectrum have been constrained by the general price upswing Set against the prior month, large-size panel shipments declined by 58% in February A year-on-year comparison on the other hand shows a 46% increase Branded device vendors continue to shift their demand towards larger sizes, and February shipments of 65-inch panels advanced against the headwinds and went up 4% compared with January shipments Iris Hu, research manager of WitsView, said panel demand from Chinese brands has started to pick up again since the start of this March because they need to prepare for the major online promotion campaigns in April and Chinese Labor Day sales in May “Chinese brands will mainly be stocking up large panels sized 55 and 65 inches as they can add more to product margins,” said Hu “Conversely, brands are abandoning panels in the 40- to 43-inch size range Because of high prices, brands are unable to achieve profitability from using panels belonging to this size range” WitsView estimates that TV panel shipments in March will rise 10% from February For the entire first quarter, however, high prices will continue to impact shipments for small- and medium-size categories First-quarter TV panel shipments are projected to post a sequential decline of 11% to 12% Innolux suffered the smallest shipment decline among the six major panel makers in February as its shipments of 65-inch products rose over 30% Looking at February shipment results of the six major panel makers, LG Display (LGD) posted a 101% drop from the prior month, totaling 385 million units LGD postponed some deliveries to March Furthermore, its shipments of mainstream 43- and 55-inch products fell 128% and 114% respectively from January However, shipments of 65-inch panels remained steady due to demand from the group company LG Electronics and other first-tier brands Innolux posted a huge monthly shipment growth of more than 30% for its 65-inch panels in February because of strong demand from Samsung Visual Display At the same time, the company’s shipments of 236-inch panels increased significantly by 141% compared with January as demand for this size category returned in the emerging markets For the entire large-size panel shipments in February, Innolux registered a marginal decline of 19% from the prior month, totaling 313 million units This was the best result among the six major panel makers BOE Technology (BOE) shipped 293 million TV panels in February, down 62% from the previous month BOE’s shipments of 32-inch panels fell 10% monthly as its Gen-85 fab in Chongqing, China, adjusted its product mix The production of 32-inch TV panels was scaled back so that more of the fab’s capacity can be used to make notebook panels This move also helped BOE stabilize prices for its 32-inch products Furthermore, combined shipments of 48- and 49-inch panels from BOE also rose 94% from January Prices of panels in the medium-size range (40- to 43-inch) surged and peaked in recent months on account of decreasing market supply Branded device vendors in response shifted their demand to a larger size range, and this in turn benefited BOE’s shipments of 48- and 49-inch panels during February China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSOT) was affected by the fewer number of workdays in February The company’s TV panel shipments for the month totaled 28 million units, down 78% from January Samsung Display (SDC) has been modifying its production processes and equipment to increase the share of high-end UHD-resolution panels in the product mix This move, which was to help compensate for the revenue loss following the closure of L7-1 fab at the end of last year, also indirectly affected SDC’s overall panel shipments For February, SDC shipped 272 million units of TV panels, representing a monthly decline of 55% The entire TV panel shipments from AU Optronics (AUO) fell 53% monthly in February to 21 million units However, there were increases for specific large-size categories Shipments 50-inch and the 55-inch UHD products respectively grew 20% and 74% compared with the prior month Demand for AUO’s large-size, high-end and niche products continues to grow due to long-term market development efforts by the company

Press Releases
TrendForce’s TV Panel Shipments Ranking for 2016 Shows LGD Retained First Place While BOE Displaced Innolux to Take Third

2017/01/24

Display / Consumer Electronics

Global shipments of LCD TV panels for 2016 fell 35% from the prior year to around 2604 million units, according to the latest report by WitsView, a division of TrendForce Major panel makers expanded their Gen-85 production capacity during 2016 in response to the rising demand for larger TV panels The increased production in the large-size segments helped consume the overall panel capacity and increased the average size of TV panels by 22 inches to 436 inches Shipments of TV panels by area therefore actually increased by 65% annually WitsView expects the average size of TV panels to increase again in 2017 LG Display (LGD) maintained its position as the leading supplier of TV panels with 5294 million units shipped in 2016, a 43% drop versus 2015 “Last year, LGD invested heavily in expanding the capacity of its Gen-85 fab in Guangzhou, China,” said Iris Hu, research manager of WitsView “The panel maker also adjusted the product mix for its Gen-85 capacity as a whole, expanding the share of the 55-inch production while reducing the share of the 32-inch single-cut production” Though the product mix adjustment resulted in an annual decline in unit volume, shipments by area rose 53% compare with 2015 LGD moreover posted significant increases in large-size segments during 2016, with the combined shipments of 60- and 65-inch products soared by 98% annually This reflected the continuing trend of demand shifting towards larger sizes Samsung Display (SDC) shipped a total of 468 million units of TV panels in 2016, representing an annual decrease of 81% Though SDC was second in the ranking, its TV panel shipments fell significantly because of the challenges involving the adoption of the Black Column Spacer (BCS) technology during the first half of 2016 Furthermore, SDC closed its LCD fab L7-1 at the end of last year with the intention to refurbish the plant for the manufacturing of AMOLED panels used in smartphones “This move not only caused decline in TV panel shipments for SDC but also created anxiety over the supply of panels sized 40 to 43 inches,” Hu pointed out “The urgency to stock up on products belonging to this size range appeared last year and will continue well into this year” BOE Technology (BOE) posted an annual increase of 224% in its TV panel shipments for 2016, amounting to 4364 million units The panel maker achieved impressive shipment growth for the second consecutive year and surpassed Innolux to take the third place in the annual ranking for the first time Last year, BOE significantly increased the capacity of its Gen-85 fab in Chongqing, China While some of the added capacity in the Chongqing plant was for notebook panels, much of it was used to raise the share of 49- and 55-inch TV panels in the overall product mix BOE’s shipments by area therefore grew considerably as well, with the annual rate reaching 335% TV panel shipments from Innolux in 2016 fell by 193% to 4173 million units Innolux’s TV panel ranking tumbled from second place in 2015 to fourth place for last year because there was no major order for its 236-inch panels and the February earthquake in southern Taiwan interfered with the company’s original production and shipment plans However, Innolux has increased the share of large-size segments in its product mix so that it can main profitability with limited production capacity Hence, Innolux’s TV panel shipments by area fell by just 63% compared with 2015 China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSOT) saw its TV panel shipments shot up last year after the panel maker finished expanding the production capacity of its second Gen-85 fab for the annual cycle CSOT’s shipments grew 297% annually in 2016 to reach 3309 million units In addition to raising its Gen-85 capacity, CSOT since last year also started to focus on shipping large-size products Thus, shipments of its 49- and 55-inch panels took off, respectively registering annual increases of 126% and 115% in unit volume CSOT moreover posted the largest increase in shipments by area compared with other TV panel suppliers with annual growth rate at 553% TV panel shipments from AU Optronics (AUO) reached 2722 million units in 2016, amounting to a marginal increase of 02% in unit volume but a significant increase of 107% in area compared with the prior year AUO managed to raise the production capacity of its fab L8B, which is assigned to make panels for large-size TVs and special high-end displays AUO moreover boosted TV panel shipments by changing the product mix of its Gen-6 TV panel capacity More weight was given to the 65-inch products, and this in effect reduced the share of Gen-6 capacity used for the 32- and 39-inch products Consequently, AUO’s unit shipments increased slightly but area shipments posted a much larger annual gain WitsView estimates that TV panel shipments for 2017 will reach 2578 million units Hu noted that the supply for products in the 40- to 45-inch range will be tight through this year as South Korean panel makers phased out a few of their fabs Furthermore, Sharp has stopped supplying panels from its Gen-10 fab in Sakai, Japan, to competing brands Samsung Electronics, which is Sharp’s largest client and accounts for 40% of its LCD panel shipments, will be forced to search for other supply sources WitsView anticipates that Samsung Electronics will be demanding 65- and 75-inch panels in the near future because it no longer can obtain the usual 60- and 70-inch products from Sharp Other TV brands will also be compelled to use larger panels Consequently, the average size of shipped TV panels in 2017 is projected to grow by nearly 2 inches to 454 inches, and the annual increase in shipped area for this year is estimated at 76%

Press Releases
LCD TV Panel Shipments Fell Just 0.9% Monthly in November as Chinese New Year Takes Over as Main Demand Driver

2016/12/22

Display

WitsView, a division of TrendForce, reports that global shipments of LCD panels for TVs totaled 2279 million units in November, representing a slight decrease of 09% compared with October Even though the stock-up demand related the North American holiday season and Singles’ Day in China receded during November, TV panel shipments remained strong as branded TV makers continued to replenish their inventories for the upcoming Chinese New Year sales “During this year, the global average price of 32-inch panels has risen over 40% from its monthly low,” noted Iris Hu, research manager of WitsView “Soaring prices in the 32-inch segment in turn have driven up production costs of mainstream-size TV sets, squeezing profits of both TV makers and retailers in channel markets” In response to this situation, TV brands since October have started to focus more on promoting TV sets larger than 32 inches This shift towards larger models led to the small decrease in unit shipments of TV panels in November Panel shipments by area, however, have been relatively stable during the month as TV brands lay the groundwork for Chinese New Year sales following the year-end holiday season LG Display (LGD) achieved a new monthly high in its TV panel shipment for this year in November with unit volume totaling around 495 million Set against the prior month, LGD grew its TV panel shipment by 84% LGD has developed a significant presence in China’s TV panel market and cultivated close relations with local first- and second-tier brands (and with OEMs) Even as panel orders for the North American holiday season were winding down, LGD could continue to expand its shipments on the back of another wave of peak season demand related to the Chinese New Year LGD’s November shipments also reflected increasing demand for large-size and UHD TV panels in China The panel maker’s shipments of products sized 55 inches and larger increased 13% on average compared with the prior month For just the 55-inch size segment, monthly shipments jumped 17% Going forward, the trend of TV panels getting larger will become even more noticeable Additionally, UHD resolution products represented 45% of LGD’s TV panel shipments in November This means that LGD currently has the highest UHD penetration rate for its TV panels compared with its competitors From the start of this year’s second half to the end of November, monthly shipments of 40-inch TV panels from Samsung Display (SDC) reached 15 to 155 million units SDC kept the 40-inch shipments at a high level as to meet the demand from TV brands that want to stock up on this product in advance of the closure of SDC’s L7-1 fab at the end of year SDC has also seen rising demand for its 55- and 65-inch panels on account of year-end promotions by TV brands Nonetheless, the conclusion of stock-up activities for Christmas holidays caused SDC’s total TV panel shipments for November to dip a bit by 06% compared with October, totaling around 442 million units TV panel shipments from Innolux in November amounted to 35 million units, down 76% from the prior month Innolux earlier had arranged collaborative projects with TV brands to sustain shipments of its 236-inch panels However, these projects ended in the third quarter, and shipments of the product began sharply in the fourth quarter with monthly declines averaging 25% On other hand, Innolux enjoyed strong shipments of its 395-inch panels The pending closure of Samsung’s L7-1 fab, which produces 40-inch panels, has triggered a wave of demand for the 395-inch To increase shipments, Innolux adjusting the capacity utilization of its two Gen-6 fabs so that more of their capacity goes to the production of 395-inch panels rather than the larger 65-inch panels For a long time, Innolux has been unable to raise the yield rate of the 65-inch panel production to an ideal level This adjustment therefore will relieve the cost burden related to the persistent low yield of the 65-inch while fulfilling the orders for the 395-inch TV panel shipments from China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSOT) took off after the panel maker completed capacity expansion for its second Gen-85 fab Since this August, CSOT’s monthly TV panel shipments topped 3 million units on average In terms of ranking, CSOT was finally able to move up within the top six TV panel suppliers by gradually widen its lead over AU Optronics (AUO) and catching up to BOE Technology (BOE) CSOT’s TV panel shipments came to 307 million units in November, up 07% from the prior month and exceeding BOE’s figure slightly by 3,000 units This result put CSOT in the fourth spot of the global monthly TV panel shipment ranking for the first time BOE’s TV panel shipments for November were around 307 million units, representing a monthly decrease of 104% BOE has registered five consecutive months of decline for its TV panel shipments since July, and the downtrend will continue as the panel maker has assigned more its available capacity to make notebook panels this fourth quarter BOE’s 32-inch panel shipments in November were around 194 million units, down 30% from this year’s monthly peak of 278 million units The sharp drop in the 32-inch segment has had a huge impact on the entire TV panel shipments for BOE AUO’s TV panel shipments in November fell 1% compared with October to 238 million units The small decline was caused by the panel maker’s decision to allocate some its Gen-6 capacity for attaching polarizer to 75- and 85-inch panels AUO’s monthly TV panel shipments, however, have gone up to an average level of 24 million units since the third quarter, when the panel maker’s L8B facility returned to full operation after completing its capacity expansion With the expanded fab, AUO was able to raise 55-inch panel shipments by almost 30% from the second quarter to the fourth quarter of 2016 Hu pointed out that shipments of TV panels in December are going to fall “Due to requests from clients, LGD delivered most of its December panel shipments in advance,” said Hu “This, along with the closure of Samsung’s L7-1 fab, will cause a 9% monthly drop in the global TV panel shipments” Looking at the entire 2016, WitsView estimates that TV panel shipments by unit will total around 2595 million, down 38% compared with 2015 However, shipments by area will expand by 69% annually owing to the increasing demand for larger TV panels “The average size of LCD TV panels will reach 436 inches this year, which is 22 inches more than last year’s average,” said Hu

Press Releases
Large-Size LCD Panel Shipments Fell Just 2.4% Monthly in October as Vendors Continue to Stock Up for Promotional Events, Says TrendForce

2016/11/22

Display

Though panel shipments were strong in October, they represented a monthly drop from the much larger shipments in September WitsView, a division of TrendForce, reports that October shipments of large-size panels (sized 7 inches and above, resolution at WSVGA and above) totaled 6683 million units, down slightly by 24% compared with the prior month According to WitsView, large-size LCD panel shipments in October were supported by demand in China, where branded device vendors extended their promotional sales period for the fourth quarter Likewise, panel demand in North America was also sustained by the stock-up activities before the holiday period Furthermore, the presidential election in the US had triggered a wave of replacement demand for PCs from the country’s government and military organizations Global TV panel shipments for October totaled 2301 million units, down 03% from September “The scheduled closure of a Samsung fab has caused the supply to tighten and prices to rise for panels sized 40 to 45 inches,” said Iris Hu, WitsView research manager “To avoid high panel costs and improve profitability, TV brands have shifted their attention to the larger size segments As a result, monthly shipments of panels sized 55 inches and above expanded 3% in October, countering to the trend of decline LG Display (LGD) retained its first-place position in the monthly TV panel shipment ranking with 456 million units shipped, representing a drop of 35% compared with September’s shipments LGD posted a decline in TV panel shipments mainly because the panel maker has allowed some deliveries to be made ahead of schedule before October as to allow several TV brands to launch their products early Among the six largest panel makers worldwide, China-based BOE Technology (BOE) suffered the largest monthly decline in TV panel shipments during October BOE had changed its product mix and allocated more of its production capacity to the making of notebook panels Hence, BOE’s TV panel shipments for the month arrived at 342 million units, translating to a decline of 55% compared with the prior month In the monitor panel market, demand is tapering off as monitor brands are finishing up stocking up for the year-end holiday period Moreover, monitor brands are struggling to maintain profitability as the average price of mainstream 215-inch panels has increased by almost 15% during the past five months To offset panel costs, some brands have raised prices for their monitor sets Global shipments of monitor panels for October fell 18% monthly to 12 million units as brands became more conservative in their panel purchases LGD in particular saw its monitor panel shipments drop 88% from the prior month to 324 million units The larger September shipments and capacity utilization rate issues led to this unusually sharp decline BOE for the first time became the leader in monthly notebook panel shipments Shipments of notebook panels in October came to 1491 million units, representing a drop of 54% versus the prior month Demand slowed down as notebook brands finished stocking up for their year-end sales events However, BOE was able to achieve a new monthly high in notebook panel shipments, registering an increase of 88% to 391 million units For the first time, BOE managed to surpass LGD and became the leader in the notebook panel market “BOE benefitted from the US market, where government and military agencies were busily replacing their computer systems ahead of the presidential election,” Hu noted “This wave of replacement demand also lifted the demand for HD resolution, Twisted Nematic (TN) panels belonging to mainstream-size categories Additionally, South Korean panel makers have scaled back their HD TN panel production, so BOE was able to pick up additional orders and greatly expand its notebook panel shipments” With the tablet market becoming saturated, branded tablet makers have less drive to stock up for the year-end holiday season Thus, tablet panel demand during the traditional busy period has been falling on yearly basis This October, however, saw US brands and white-box vendors expanding and extending their stock-up activities in preparation for a big promotional push during the Christmas holidays Monthly shipments of tablet panels therefore reached 1691 million units in October, down just 31% from September On the back of Apple’s demand, LGD increased its tablet panel shipments by 7% compared with the prior month to 24 million units Also, Amazon’s aggressive promotion of its low-price tablets caused shipments of 7-inch WSVGA panels from Taiwan’s Chungwha Picture Tubes (CPT) to register a huge monthly increase of 333% On the whole, CPT’s tablet panel shipments for October rose 85% over the prior month to 351 million units “As the busy stock-up period is about to finish, branded device makers are under greater to pressure to keep their inventories low at the end of year,” Hu pointed out “They therefore will be more conservative in their panel purchases” Furthermore, major panel makers are revamping their production facilities and adjusting their product mixes, so there is going to be some loss in the overall panel production capacity Looking ahead, panel market will see shipments in different application segments corrected downward during November Tablet and monitor panel shipments will fell 2~3%, respectively, compared with October Chinese TV brands will sustain TV panel shipments in November as they address the issue of tight supply for mid-size panels and continue to stock up for the next Chinese New Year holidays Therefore, global TV panel shipments for November will fall only by 1~2% compared with the prior month As for notebook panel shipments, they are expected to stay constant in November because of a flurry of notebook orders from governments worldwide

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