Originally Posted by steve1971
Sony may be bleeding right now due to low tv sales but I believe they can fix it. 2015 will tell the story. 4K is not the answer to their problems as I have said before, they should have learned that with 3D. What Sony should do is turn towards OLED. If any company can make a successful run with OLED Sony can. They have the means, capability, and money to do it. With OLED they can give Samsung a run for their money. But if their banking on 4K to save their falling tv manufacturing business then they are in trouble, big trouble. To me 4K is the new flavor of the month just as 3D was
and it wont help Sony out one bit, not with all the manufacturers getting in on the 4K craze.
In terms of 4K being the new flavor of the month and 3D being the last flavor of the month, I see it a bit differently.
3D was a complicated sales proposition. It was complicated to use, it caused some people headaches, it required new content to deliver anything truly worthwhile and 'better', it essentially needed the entire cinema and video industry lined up behind it which quickly sputtered (witness ESPN), and it required a significant investment in educating the consumer (which was pretty successfully achieved, in my opinion).
4K is a different matter. It sells itself. It essentially comes 'for free' on LCD technology (both from the perspective of investments in R&D as well as manufacturing cost). The consumer is already very well educated on resolution - more is better. It will offer immediate benefits through upscaling while the content industry starts to make more and more 4K content available. It is hitching its caboose to a powerful disruptive force in the industry, namely streaming, so the first 4K content is likely to be available much more quickly than it was in the case of 3D (which really never got out of the niche category).
No one has a crystal ball, but several years from now we are going to look back and see that either 4K displays rolled out and have taken over the entire high-end of the market (my bet) or they have not and 1080p remains the primary display resolution at the high-end as well as the only resolution available on content even through streaming (your bet).
There's not much value in arguing who may be placing the better bet now - we can take a raincheck on that until 2016/2017. But the important point is what this bet means for the major flat-panel industry players including Sony.
If you are right and 4K ultimately proves to be a flash in the pan and flops, you are correct that OLED is probably going to emerge as a significant technology for 1080p panels in the future. But imagine if Sony makes all of the investments required to execute that OLED-centric strategy and I
turn out to be right. OLED probably cannot deliver 4K, may not be able to deliver very large panels, and LCD has proven a painless ability to do both while nipping away at weaknesses like dark-level performance and motion blur which each passing generation...
For Sony to bet on OLED in the way you are suggesting could
amount to a Company-wide bet that does threaten Sony's very existence if the bet fails, and I believe the fact that Sony has already announced an intention to spin-off the TV division indicates that they are aware of this fact, have decided that is a bet they are not comfortable making, and so they will leave the TV division to see if they can find another investor willing to finance that or another strategy.
I'm afraid I believe Art is right. The emergence of 4K means LCD will
likely take over the world. Without breakthroughs that have not yet materialized, OLED will be relegated to the small-size (55" and below) high-end of the market (and even for that they are going to have challenges getting costs down on the volumes that opportunity will offer).
We should also not forget that Sony has demonstrated an ability to deliver some darned good LCDs (just not at competitive prices). I found this recent review surprising and encouraging for Sony's future: http://www.trustedreviews.com/sony-kdl-50w829_TV_review#tr-review-summary
p.s. and I also believe that Panasonic's decision to kill its plasma business right at its technological peak is further confirmation that the entire flat-panel industry recognizes that the 4K train has left the station and ain't never coming back...