Originally Posted by Suzook
"What they didn't do is cancel the 945 to protect the tiny Elite market, that's for certain"
And you know this for certain how? Guessing and opinions dont count ;-)
Funny, I was sure you've told me you have me on ignore a good dozen times.
As to your answer... sources inside of Sharp (which I cannot reveal, of course, or else they would cease to be sources withing Sharp.... a concept that is lost on many here, sigh) are fairly insistent that the Elite line is basically run by a small group outside of the main Sharp channels. Its success doesn't shine a positive light on the rest of the Sharp TV's divisions financials (ditto its lack of success in reverse). The Sharp sales/marketing/product folks are not benefiting from Elite in the areas that matter to them and are therefore not protecting it....
It's funny, given what you knew about how poor Elite sales were in Florida some time back, you should have a sense just how little Elite contributes. No forecast for 945 wouldn't obliterate Elite on units, gross margin, revenue, etc. And it would provide a more direct halo on the Sharp brand than Elite does, especially given the arm's length of the branding.
So, again, I have speculation as to what happened to 945 (and whether it might resurface), but I have certainty it wasn't to protect this tiny, fledging Elite line that is not making Sharp money in any meaningful way (it's probably actually losing money when fully accounted) and isn't especially burnishing Sharp's brand. In fact, Sharp's brand strength (or remaining lack thereof) has something to do with the 945 issues I suspect
. The market for $4000+ TV is really, really, really small. Even at the numbers they probably forecast for 945, there are doubtless questions about the risk/return when there are so many ways to move volume right now across the rest of their lines -- which are well assorted.
Consider also that Sony has more or less pulled the only other mainstream locally dimmed, full array TV from its lineup (the HX929 carries over, it's replacement is very, very uncertain). As much as we all love that technology, it's a tough sell in tough times... Anyway, I've moved into speculation, which is what I'd prefer to stay away from further from now -- especially in the Elite thread.