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Intel Scraps LCoS Production Plans

Intel Corp. announced that it has officially scrapped its plans to develop Liquid Crystal on Silicon (LCoS) chips for microdisplay projection televisions.

Intel first announced its intention to produce LCoS chips for television manufacturers at the International CES last January, saying it expected to have LCoS panels ready by the end of the year. However, last August the company said the introduction would be delayed to focus on panels that could compete better against advances in competitive microdisplay systems, like Texas Instruments’ DLP chipsets.

The decision to cancel the project outright was made after considering the investment cost and the time it would take to bring the chips to market, the company said.

Intel joins a long list of manufacturers who had announced plans to market LCoS products, only to pull out after discovering the difficulty acquiring or producing competitively priced panels.

The most recent announcement came from Royal Philips Electronics, which scrapped production of its Cineos one-chip LCoS rear-projection televisions, citing difficulty in producing products that could compete in price with new microdisplay televisions based on Texas Instruments’ DLP chip technology.

Currently, JVC and Sony market microdisplay rear-projection sets and monitors using proprietary chips based on the LCoS system. LCoS panels are also used in front projectors produced by a number of up-market home-theater display manufacturers.