OLED TV Reaches the Consumer Market

Display manufacturer {complink 3074|LG Electronics Inc.} has leapfrogged competitor {complink 4751|Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.} in the large-size OLED display market.

According to Reuters, LG has begun taking orders for 55-inch OLED TVs, which are slated to ship in February.

Displays based on organic light-emitting diode (OLED) technology are thinner, lighter, and more energy efficient than LCDs. The technology has long been considered the future of display technology as OLED screens can be manufactured on flexible substrates such as plastic. This enables virtually unbreakable OLEDs to be mass-produced using a roll-to-roll (R2R) process, similar to the way newspapers are printed.

Both LG and Samsung have showcased OLED TVs in the past, but the products have yet to reach retail shelves. Samsung, the world’s No. 1 display manufacturer, is considered the leader in OLED development. LG’s move could be a blow the electronics giant, which is embroiled in a bitter court battle with one of its biggest customers, Apple Inc.

Mass adoption of OLEDs has so far been held back because of price: unlike LCDs, OLEDs don’t yet have a massive manufacturing infrastructure. Reuters reports that LG’s OLED TV will cost about $1,000.

Initially, the beneficiaries of widespread OLED adoption would be manufacturers such as LG and Samsung, but the release could mark an opportunity for new players to enter the supply chain. OLED materials are sprayed onto substrates in a manner similar to ink-jet technology, and R2R is not yet widely used in electronics. On the downside, prices and margins for LCDs would continue to drop. Manufacturers such as Sharp, Toshiba, and Hitachi have been feeling the effects of a soft LCD market and have spun off or sold portions of their display operations.

Reuters says LG will release its first OLED TVs in South Korea, followed by the US, Europe, and Asia during the first quarter of this year.

5 comments on “OLED TV Reaches the Consumer Market

  1. Wale Bakare
    January 2, 2013

    >> energy efficient<<

    Light emitting diode is the future lightning – its efficient capacity far more than any others. However, that makes it more investment worthy and profitable. But how would Samsung respond to this?

  2. t.alex
    January 2, 2013

    How is it if we compare between OLED TV and the current LED TV in the market?

  3. Wale Bakare
    January 2, 2013

    Basically this semiconductor's high degree of resolution display makes it usefullness top in OEM especially for smatphones, tablets, tvs and others. Actually, LEDs are of two types: (1) regular LED (2) organic LED. The oragnic  material's presence  and no need of backlit the main difference.

    January 3, 2013

    I believe this is a big deal for the monitor and TV business.  Samsung has been ahead in the game for a while now and so this is a real coup for LG.  It should really shake the market up to the benefit of us all.

  5. Barbara Jorgensen
    January 3, 2013

    I think Samsung will respond with a bigger TV, but it has probably lost the “wow” factor. They may also price the devices lower than LG if Samsung has been able to improve manufacturing yields. The yield issue will keep prices high for awhile, I think

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