IHS DisplaySearch has shared its latest panel pricing data from the PriceWise service, covering late Q1/early Q2.
Brands purchased fewer notebook panels in early Q2, due to inventory digestion and European currency issues. Demand will rise again once inventory is cleared. IT brands are preparing aggressively for back-to-school demand in Q3.
Notebook panel makers are under pressure to lower prices. Some vendors are shifting capacity to automotive, industrial and smartphone applications. However, there is still excess supply and so prices are still under pressure. DisplaySearch expects prices to fall $0.60 – $1.
The supply of large-sized monitor panels, such as 23.8″ and 27″, is being increased by panel makers as part of their size migration product strategies. Price pressure remains heavy in May, with prices falling about $1. The fall has been larger for some sizes, such as 21.5″, due to supply-side competition.
Pressure has also continued on LCD TV panel prices, particularly 32″ and UltraHD models. 40″, 42″ and 43″ panel prices are an exception, remaining flat due to both high demand and limited sources.
Despite slowing demand, panel makers are unlikely to lower prices on most TV panels. There are still a few leading brands demanding panels. IHS expects that some TV brands will have to significantly drive shipments in the second half of the year in order to use panel inventory. However, this would seem to be challenging how the market can be stimulated significantly by discounts.
Most TV makers are being cautious about production, and have cut panel demand by about 9% QoQ in Q2. Some panel makers are planning to offer Chinese TV vendors price protection on certain sizes. Several of these Chinese brands are expected to lower 32″ panel demand by 20% – 25% QoQ. Due to increasing costs (panel prices have been rising for almost a year) and currency depreciation, the TV brands can hardly maintain an aggressive pricing strategy.