I was in Las Vegas (by coincidence) at the same time as The Consumer Electronics Show (CES), this is a huge conference with over 150,000 attending (compare with around 40,000 that overwhelm San Francisco for Oracle Open World) so I did meet a few people attending it. In my far from scientific survey, based on who I chatted to in a bar or overheard in taxi lines, flat panel displays were all the rage. The 2009 analog TV switch off in the US is to the TV manufacturers what the millennium bug was to COBOL programmers - a big chance to cash in. This is despite the fact that the 80% of US viewers who have cable or satellite will be unaffected.
I can imagine the conversation now - "Honey, we need a new TV anyway because they're switching to digital; so we may as well get this 52" flat screen, a blu-ray and a surround sound system". You can be the TV manufacturers won't be in a rush to point out that you don't need to worry
Does the software industry also encourage this type of thing? I would say in the Enterprise space is really doesn't work, CEO focus on ROI and look at TOI. Oracle has made it clear with it's Applications Unlimited messaging that it doesn't want to rush anyone to upgrade, it will support the acquired products as long as customers want to use it. Of course there is a big difference, Oracle can earn money from supporting you on an old application version and if you are forced to upgrade you may go to a competitor's product - so we don't want to push you if you're happy with what you have got, we want the relationship to continue. Once you've bought a TV though that is generally the end of your relationship with the manufacturer.
One other interesting note from Las Vegas was that the Adult Video Awards was on at the end of the week, was it an accident that they scheduled these two events in the same week? I'm sure many geeks were happy to have two different types of silicon/e to get excited about.