Notebooks weather the economic storms

El Segundo (CA) – Market research firm Displaysearch reported on shipments of LCD screens in March.

Although most sizes of screens showed a drop in shipments compared to March 2008, notebook screens stayed static with zero percent growth.

Shipments of those size of screens grew month on month, by 38 percent. And the same trend held true for LCD monitors and LCD screens too. That, according to Displaysearch, is the first time that the different categories showed such growth in six months. Sales of LCD TVs showed decent growth, year on year.

Revenues from all categories of LCD screens amounted to $3.9 billion. Vice president of Displaysearch, David Hsieh, said the March results were encouraging. “They reflect a good recovery in demand,” he said. “Considering the current end market demand and the low panel inventories, we expect that shipments will continue to grow in Q2 09, and we forecast that panel makers will reach 80 percent capacity utilization in Q2 09.”

The companies that make LCD flat panels would prefer, like other semiconductor manufacturers, to have 100 percent capacity at their fabrication plants. But the major players will be encouraged by the growth in March compared to February.

Here are the figures, courtesy of the Displaysearch Monthly TFT LCD Shipment Database.

   Mar 08  Feb 08 Mar 09   M/M Growth  Y/Y Growth
 Notebook PC  11.7  8.5  11.6  38%  0%
 LCD Monitor  18.4  12.4  15.4  24%  -17%
 TV  8.7  7.7  9.9  30%  14%
 Other  1.2  0.8  0.9  22%  -24%
 L/A Total  40  29.3  37.9  29%  -5%