After the heartbreak of losing Pioneer's excellent Kuro line, Panasonic's plasma displays were the last bastion of hope for plasma TV enthusiasts, but now even they are going extinct. Panasonic today confirmed a Reuters report from earlier this month that it is exiting the plasma TV market with almost immediate effect — production of new units will end in December and all related operations will be wrapped by March next year. Two of Panasonic's three factories have already stopped building new units and the third will join them in about a month's time.
Panasonic made a strong effort to push its plasma TVs this year — coming to CES in January with a fully refreshed home theater lineup — however the economics of plasma display production just haven't worked out for the company. Though consumer demand is apparently still firm, Panasonic says that "due to rapid, drastic changes in the business environment" and price pressure from more affordable LCD TVs, the unhappy decision had to be made. That leaves HD enthusiasts with a few months to save up the money to buy a ZT60, the last in a proud line of beautiful TVs.