January 3, 2005 – Canon Inc. plans to launch rear-projection TVs, popular in the US, as early as late 2005, said Jiji Press Ltd. Canon will use core parts, such as LCD panels and lenses, which it has developed for business-use projectors.
Canon has already announced a plan to launch in the 2H05 surface-conduction electron-emitter display (SED) TVs, another type of flat-panel TV being developed jointly with Toshiba Corp.
By launching two types of flat-panel TVs, Canon aims to make the audio and video equipment division one of its core business lines, company officials said. SED TVs will be launched mainly in screen sizes of between 50 inches and <60 inches diagonally, while the rear-projection technology will be used for TVs with 60-inch or larger screens.
As production costs are lower than those for LCD TVs, many Japanese makers, including Sony Corp., Hitachi Ltd., Victor Co. of Japan Ltd and Seiko Epson Corp., place emphasis on rear-projection TVs.