Canon, Toshiba to delay SED new flat TV launch

Fri May 25, 2007 5:18am EDT

(Adds details, background)

TOKYO May 25 (Reuters) - Canon Inc. (7751.T) and Toshiba Corp. (6502.T) have decided to postpone the launch of SED TVs from their latest target of late 2007, the Japanese companies said on Friday, raising doubt over the commercial viability of the new flat televisions.

Canon cited a prolonged patent lawsuit with Nano-Proprietary Inc. NNPP.OB as a reason for the delay. It is also delaying the launch to develop the technology to cut production costs, a step necessary to compete with LCD and plasma TVs, the company said.

Toshiba, which plans to procure SED panels from Canon, is postponing the TV launch as Canon is unable to start supplying the panels on time.

The new launch timing has yet to be decided, they said.

Despite the delay, however, both companies said they have no intentions of abandoning plans to offer SED TVs.

"We still plan to offer SED TVs as soon as we secure panel supplies," a Toshiba spokeswoman said.

SED (surface-conduction electron-emitter display) TVs are said to have brighter images and consume less energy than existing LCD and plasma models.

But analysts are concerned that SED TV suppliers, which do not even have large-scale production facilities at the moment, are likely to face an uphill battle in bringing down prices fast enough in the flat TV market, known for multi-billion dollar investments and steep price declines.

($1=121.06 Yen)

((Reporting by Kiyoshi Takenaka, editing by Malcolm Whittaker; Reuters Messaging: kiyoshi.takenaka.reuters.com@reuters.net; +81-3-3432-8837; kiyoshi.takenaka@reuters.com)) Keywords: CANON SED/

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