In a few days the price of flat panel TVs will drop considerably. Why? Because Sony wants to regain its number one market share, so its drastically dropping the prices of its first new 2008 1080p flat panel models in order to pick up more sales volume.

Want more good news? According to a well-placed industry sources, you can expect Sony’s major competitors (LG, Samsung, Sharp, Toshiba) to react by dropping their respective prices too (in May).

Here is an example. Sony’s1080p (1920×1080) HDTV the KDL-40S4100 will have a (suggested minimum price) of just $1199 making a full $500 less than its lowest priced predecessor.

How about a 461080p set? The new KDL-46S4100 will be priced at $1599 (representing a $400 drop). This is Sony’s“advertised price”. The big box retailers Circuit City and Best Buy have been dropping below this minimum advertised price (MAP) 10% or more, only a week or two after other 2008 HDTVs have debuted, so don’t be surprised to see these Sony prices cut quickly by the big box retailers.

What about Plasma? This price marks the first time a 1080p LCD is priced below 1080p plasma. The HD Guruâ„¢ expects a lockstep reaction by the big plasma vendors with 2008 product now available or coming to market in May (Panasonic, LG and Samsung).

Likewise 2nd and 3rd tier vendors (i.e. Vizio, Westinghouse) will have to react too, but probably don’t have as much room to move as Sony does because the “off brands” source all their products from outside panel makers and assembly plants.

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