Hitachi pulls the plug on RPTVs in North America

Hitachi has announced it's stopping production and sales of its LCD- and CRT-based RPTVs in North America. The production facility in Mexico which serves the North American market was actually shut down this summer. While this might not come as much of a surprise to us, this is a sure sign that the average consumer's idea of what a "big screen, HD" TV is has shifted from a monstrous box to a slim flat panel. The torch has been passed, and recentannouncements indicate that Hitachi is smitten with the "thin is in" concept as well. We expect to see similar decisions from other manufacturers in the future as LCDs and PDPs continue their roll. There's some nostalgia for the huge behemoths that were our introduction to HDTV, but you really couldn't pay us to go back.