I think the main reason the plasmas went south is the lack of knowledge of the people buying TVs. We did this with Beta-Max VCRs. In all the years I had VCRs (and I had a lot of them), I never had one that came close to a Sony Beta-Max for PQ.
Yeah, but the average person has a lack of knowledge when it comes to just about any product. They are no more knowledgeable when it comes to buying computers, smartphones, dishwashers, or cars. If they like the look of one car or it claims 'more' of something they want (trunk space, towing capacity, whatever) they'll buy it. I remember overhearing a friend of a friend saying he bought his new car because it had more airbags than any other model they looked at so he figured it must be safer! When I heard that the fact that the number of air bags is listed in the specs began to make more sense.
Supposedly the reason why VHS beat out Beta is porn, and while Sony's refusal to allow adult studios to distribute videos on Beta may have given a leg up to VHS, what most likely was the deciding factor was price. VHS VCRs were much less expensive. Most people don't feel an increase in quality above what they feel is 'good enough' is worth spending more on, and the people who really wanted high quality bought Laser Disc. A VCR's recording quality was a non-factor for most - I remember reading something long ago that less than 10% of people regularly used their VCR to record.
Plasmas sold a lot better in the larger sizes where they were cheaper than LCDs, but not as well in the smaller sizes where you had to pay more because most people feel LCD is "good enough". As the fab technology used to make LCDs improved the crossover keeps getting bigger and bigger, but the appetite for larger screens is finite - most people have limited space they're willing to devote to a TV. Between that, and wanting to market 4K which would increase the power draw and cost of plasmas a lot more than it did for LCDs, was pretty much the death knell for plasma.
It probably didn't help that plasmas last much longer than LCDs (all the plasmas I've bought back as far as 2005 are still in service - over two dozen, all lower end consumer models) and most of these spent more time on than off. In that same time frame I've had two monitors and one small LCD TV fail. I recently upgraded to a 4K monitor (27" Dell IPS) and I wouldn't be shocked if all those plasmas are still going strong when this monitor fails as well!
Edited by slice1900, Yesterday, 05:29 PM.