In just two more years, your swank high definition television might be obsolete, or at least the technology behind it. That's the time frame Matsushita has given for when it plans to start selling an OLED television with a screen size of 40 inches.
If you haven't been following the HDTV landscape, OLED technology promises thinner displays, a better looking picture, and lower power consumption, making it the frontrunner to succeed both LCD and plasma. Cost continues to be a prohibiting factor in the here and now, but Matsushita hopes to tackle that problem by investing several dozen billion yen into a prototype production line for 20-inch OLED panels, while also doubling the personnel involved in developing larger screen OLED displays.
While Matsushita's 2011 deadline might appear to be overly ambitious, the company already has a head start on the technology. Earlier this month a report from Japan's Nikkei BP said Matsushita and Toshiba were ready to begin mass-producing 2.5-inch organic screens by the fall of 2009. Meanwhile new breakthroughs continue to drive down the manufacturing cost of OLEDs, so if even we don't see OLED televisions by 2011, the writing will at least be on the wall.
Image Credit: Toshiba and Matsushita