Chances are the people you know don't know the difference rather than the mfg got their own specs wrong. Just saying, I am not betting 1000 on "well, some friends of mine are sure they are getting 1080p."
I've seen screencaps dude, and I've done it myself. Think whatever you want, but when you set, for example, the 360 to 1080i, the info bubble shows "1920x1080i" and when you change it to 1080p, it says "1920x1080p". But I guess the set must be lying to me too, and somehow taking the incoming 1080p signal that it doesn't support, interlacing it, deinterlacing it, and then displaying it, all without telling anybody that it's not supported.
If you don't want to spend your hard-earned money, fine. But go check out the (several hundred page) threads on AVS forum about the 37w3, 42w2 and 47w1. They ALL support 1080p over component, and literally HUNDREDS of people who DO know what they're talking about attest to that fact. That's one (of many) reasons I decided to buy one myself, and the results were EXACTLY what I was led to believe.
And granted, I don't know as much about HT stuff as a lot of the guys on AVS (some of whom have degrees in sound or video engineering and $100k+ into their setups), but I have been a HT geek for over 15 years now, into DVD since launch day ten years ago, and HD for four years now. I have 3 HD sets and 6 HD sources, half of which are 1080p (with one more--my HD DVD player--to be upgraded later this year, but not for that reason), so I do know the difference.