• Kyodo News

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Sony Corp. will stop shipping television sets employing organic light emitting diode technology in Japan at the end of March as sales of the thin-panel TVs have proven sluggish, sources said Tuesday.

Sony will also end domestic sales of organic electroluminescent TVs after inventories run out but will continue overseas sales in North America and Europe as well as research and development on expanding the size of the displays, they said.

The company in 2007 launched in Japan what it called the world’s first organic EL TV, featuring an 11-inch display as thin as 3 mm and having a suggested retail price of ¥200,000.

Hopes were high that the next-generation TVs would replace liquid crystal TVs, but sales have been poor due to their high prices and the technological difficulties involved in making larger panels, the sources said.

In addition, starting in April, TVs that do not have functions to limit access to harmful sites can no longer be sold in Japan in line with a law on regulating the Internet that took effect last April to protect young people from deleterious content.

Subsequently, Sony decided it would be unprofitable to introduce organic EL TVs equipped with such functions, the sources said.

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