While Sharp may have high expectations for the large HDTV (60+ inches) segment, it would seem that the manufacturer is nonetheless feeling the effects of an overall stagnant market. Nikkei reports that Sharp will cut LCD production by half at a plant in Osaka, Japan in response to a downturn in TV demand. That's not to say the affected factory lines will sit idle during the break. Sharp is allegedly considering retooling its facilities to develop higher-resolution displays and improve power management options for its panels.
This marks the second time in less than a year that the company has halted LCD output — the massive earthquake that struck Japan last March put a gas used in its manufacturing process in short supply, leading to a month-long pause at two facilities. This shift in production could potentially last well beyond that. We wouldn't expect the change to be noticeable on the retail front, but the cut is expected to have an impact on Sharp's financial outlook due later today. Regardless, the multitude of new HDTVs we saw at CES would indicate manufacturers are eager to turn the page on an underwhelming year.