Canon and Toshiba join for flat screen partnership

Canon and Toshiba announced today that they would be launching a partnership worth $1.82 billion to produce the next generation of flat-panel display screens - Surface Conduction Electron Emitter Displays, or SED for short. The two companies have been conducting research on the technology since 1999.

SEDs are thinner that existing flat-screens are more power efficient, and do not require a back light (LCDs do). The companies will begin making SED panels for TVs in 2005. Currently, the pair is the only major companies developing SED panels, a fact unsurprising due to the massive investment costs involved. Toshiba will be using SED technology for TVs over 32" in size, with LCD technology being used for sizes below that.

Analysts DisplaySearch predict the flat-screen market to be worth ~ $97 billion in 2008, up from ~40 billion last year. Currently, the pair has no plans to license out the technology to other companies.

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