That’s likely to result in some changes to the sets – and they don’t sound especially encouraging. NPD reports set makers are reducing the number of LEDs per TV set which will lower brightness and veer away from the slim designs and picture quality that have helped LED backlit sets.
“LED penetration in LCD TV was 7 points lower than our forecast a year ago, mainly due to high LED premiums,” said Yoshio Tamura, senior vice president at NPD DisplaySearch. “The premium for a LED backlight in a 32″ LCD TV was 42 percent in Q4’11, although it had been expected to fall to 27 percent. Therefore, TV makers are changing their strategies on direct LED-backlit TV. Instead of high picture quality, set makers have chosen low-power consumption with a corresponding lower price as selling points for this new type of LED-backlit TV. This will increase its competitiveness with CCFL-backlit LCD TV and even CRT TV.”
While sales are the ultimate goal, the trend is a disappointing one for videophiles. NPD did not cite any specific manufacturers in its report, but edge-lit LED TVs are much less dynamic than their backlit cousins.