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  Date:4th June 2012

81% of tablet display panel market captured by LG and Samsung, says IHS

IHS iSuppli has reported that of the 81.3 million panels shipped to the tablet space in 2011, LG Display controlled the largest portion of the market at 46 percent, followed by Samsung at 35 percent. IHS has quoted the information in its small and medium displays market tracker report.

LG Display and Samsung Display won the high-profile designs at Apple Inc. and Amazon that fuelled them to remain in top positions in 2011. They accounted to more than 80 percent of all the shipments of panels to the superheated market for tablet devices.

LG and Samsung, the two South Korean electronics earned 81 percent of the entire tablet panel market in 2011. While this was down from the 98 percent combined share they commanded in 2010, the companies maintained a dominant portion of the market in 2011. New players such as Japanese-based Sharp Corp. and Japan Display, as well as AU Optronics of Taiwan, will begin to gain share.

Six suppliers shared the remainder of the market, as shown in the table below.

Display panel

"LG and Samsung in 2011 retained their positions as the dominant panel suppliers in the media tablet display market due to their sales to high-profile customers, such as Apple Inc. for its iPad, Amazon for its Kindle Fire, Barnes & Noble for its Nook, and Research In Motion Ltd. for its PlayBook," said Vinita Jakhanwal, director for small & medium Displays at IHS. "LG and Samsung became the majority suppliers of tablet display panels in 2010, when tablets re-emerged from obscurity thanks to the launch of the iPad that year."

The tablet has established itself as one of the main forces driving the growth of the market for small and medium displays, defined as panels sized smaller than 10 inches.

Tablet panel shipments this year will reach 144.5 million units, up 78 percent from 81.3 million units last year. The solid growth predicted for this year follows the phenomenal 408 percent expansion in tablet display shipments in 2011 from 2010, when shipments were only 16 million units.

Among the various size segments in the tablet panel space, the 9.x-inch category reigned supreme in 2011 with 68 percent of the market, due mainly to the success of Apple's iPad. However, the 7.x-inch category will gain increased traction this year, especially if Apple goes ahead with an expected 7.x-inch iPad Mini to compete with similar 7.x-inch tablets already on the market, such as the Kindle Fire and Nook.

Growth in the 7.x-inch segment will translate into a 36 percent share of market this year for that category, with market share for the 9.x-inch declining to 56 percent, down from 67 percent in 2010.

This year will also see increased diversification take place in the tablet supply chain, with display suppliers projected to operate in both high- and low-end tablet segments. More panel suppliers are expected to enter the display business, leading to increased competition.

Higher levels of competition will help to drive down panel costs to OEMs and in turn increase demand and help sustain growth for the tablet panel market, IHS believes.

Author: Srinivasa Reddy N
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