Taiwan, however, is now in the middle of factory construction. By the end of 2005, Taiwan will have 24 factories to Korea's 19, giving it the opportunity to regain the top spot.
In a lot of ways, the hardware industry is sort of like a bad gambling habit. Price declines in the past year have eroded the profits of many flat panel makers. But, rather than get out, many sink billions more into new factories to lower costs and boosts output in the quest for market share. Besides, an EE has to do something.