OLED displays use organic materials that emit light when electricity is applied. OLEDs enable emissive, bright, thin, flexible and efficient displays - and so OLEDs are set to replace LCDs in all display applications - from small displays to large TV sets.
An AMOLED display is an OLED display that is driven by an active matrix backplane, it is a type of OLED display that can achieve high performance. Most OLED displays such as the ones used in TVs and smartphones are actually AMOLED displays.
What does AMOLED mean?
The term AMOLED means Active-Matrix OLED. The 'active-matrix' part refers to the driving electronics, or the TFT layer. When you display an image, you actually display it line by line (sequentially) as you can only change one line at a time. An AMOLED uses a TFT which contains a storage capacitor which maintains the line pixel states, and so enables large size (and large resolution) displays.
AMOLED displays today are used in many applications - and are most common in smartphones. Most smartphones today use AMOLED displays - including the latest Samsung phones, all of Apple's iPhones models and more.
AMOLED vs PMOLED
A PMOLED uses a simpler kind of driver electronics - without a storage capacitor. This means that each line is turned off when you move to the next line. So let's say you have 10 rows in your display - each row will only be on 1/10 of the time. The brightness of each row has to be 10 times the brightness you'd get in an AMOLED. So you use more voltage which shortens the lifetime of the OLED materials and also results in a less efficient display. So while PMOLEDs are cheaper to make than AMOLEDs they are limited in size and resolution (the largest PMOLED is only 5", and most of them are around 1" to 3"). Most PMOLEDs are used for character display, and not to show photos or videos.
Flexible, foldable and rollable AMOLEDs
One of the main advantages of AMOLED displays is that they can be made flexible. Flexible AMOLEDs are already popular for many years in smartphones and wearables, and in 2019 we will experience the first foldable devices and rollable screens.
Looking to buy AMOLED displays?
Are you looking to buy AMOLED display for your project? AMOLEDs on the market range from small 1-inch ones for smartwatches through large OLEDs used in tablets and laptops - to large TV panels, up to 97" in size. Visit our OLED Marketplace, the world's most comprehensive OLED catalog, where you can browse the available panels, and let us help you find the best AMOLED supplier for your needs!
The latest AMOLED news:
Audi unveiled the interior design of it upcoming 2024 Q6 e-tron EV SUV. The car will have three displays: A main 14.5" multimedia display, a 11.9" virtual instrument cluster and a 10.9" passenger display. There are conflicting reports, but it seems that at least one of these displays will be an OLED (and maybe all of them, we do not know yet).
The Q6 e-tron will also feature Audi's second-gen OLED taillight technology, that use a total of 360 individual OLED panels built into 6 different lighting panels (The OLEDs are likely produced by OLEDWorks, like all of Audi's recent OLED panels.
MIni Cooper unveiled the interior design of its upcoming 2025 model, with a large round OLED display (this same display was shown a year ago in a Mini concept car design).
The display is 9.4" in size, and is produced by Samsung Display. Mini Cooper developed its own unique software, called Mini Operating System 9, complete with several experience modes that control the complete interface and Mini's new personal assistant dog called Spike.
Samsung announced several new devices today, all utilizing AMOLED displays. We'll start with the two new foldable phones, the Galaxy Z Fold5 and Z Flip5. The Fold5 offers a foldable 7.6" 120Hz 1812x2176 foldable AMOLED display, and a 6.2" 120Hz 904x2316 cover AMOLED. The phone has a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset, 12 GB of RAM, up to 1TB of storage and a triple camera setup.
Samsung's Galaxy Z Flip5 smartphone offers a foldable 6.7" 120Hz 1080x2640 foldable AMOLED display, and a small 3.4" 720x748 cover Super AMOLED display. The phone has a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset, 8 GB of RAM, up to 512GB of storage and a dual camera setup.
An interesting video review shows a new repair system, based on lasers, that can fix defects in smartphone AMOLED displays. The system uses optical microscopy to find defects in operating OLED displays, and then a laser is used to fix the problems:
Such systems can be useful, but of course won't be able to fix all problems and defects in AMOLED displays, only ones that were caused by physical problems in conductive lines in the OLED module, that can be fixed by lasers. It will be interesting to see if these machines will truly find a place in the OLED repair aftermarket scene.
DSCC expects the AMOLED stack material market to grow 4% in 2023, to $1.4 billion, and to reach $2.18 billion in 2027, that's a 12% CAGR from 2023 to 2027. In 2022, the market declined by 10%. The forecast does not include any UDC revenues from blue PHOLED materials, which means that if UDC succeeds in commercializing its blue material, revenues could be higher by hundreds of millions of dollars.
DSCC says that demand for OLED TVs will continue to decline in 2023. In 2022, revenues of OLED TV revenues declined by 17%, and in 2023 revenues will decline 3% further. Growth will resume, though, in 2024, and in 2023-2027 the market will grow at a CAGR of 13%.
According to reports from Korea, Samsung Electronics considered adopting AMOLED display produced by BOE for its next flagship smartphone, but the company has halted the review process as the two companies are in the midst of an IP dispute.
A few months ago Samsung filed a motion with the US ITC to halt the import of aftermarket AMOLED displays produced by BOE. A group of OLED makers in China, which includes BOE, answered with a motion of their own, to dismiss an SDC AMOLED patent. This legal battle continues, and the tension between Samsung and BOE is on the rise.
AU Optronics has a 4.5-Gen AMOLED production line in Singapore, active since around 2013. The AFPD line is a small-scale operation, and AUO never managed to expand its capacity and compete with large AMOLED producers.
According to a report from Japan, AUO is now considering closing down the AFPD line, and converting it to microLED R&D production line. It could move it back to Taiwan, or retain Singapore as a hub for AUO in Southeast Asia. The company will make a final decision, it seems, in early 2024.
According to reports from Korea, Hyundai Motor decided to adopt Samsung Display's 25" AMOLED displays in its next-generation Genesis car, a horizontal dashboard display.
Samsung already supplies AMOLED displays for Hyundai's Ioniq 5 (digital side mirrors), but this is the company's first design win for Genesis.
China-based Visionox demonstrated many OLED displays and new technologies at Display Week 2023.
So first up, we have some rollable and foldable OLEDs. You can see some impressive looking such flexible OLEDs in the video above, and Visionox featured many such displays at their booth.
Most analysts seem to agree that global demand for OLED displays is set to slow down in 2023. DSCC says that revenues will decrease 7% in 2023, led by a drop in demand for OLED smartphone and TV displays. Omdia also agrees, saying that OLED fab utilization remains low.
China-based Sigmaintaell, meanwhile, is optimistic on China's own OLED industry, expecting production to jump 40% in 2023. Sigmaintell says that Chinese phone makers are increasing their adoption of OLED displays in high-end and mid-range models. The company's analysts expect over 220 million Chinese OLED panels to ship in 2023, and China's OLED market share to rise to 38%, up from 28% in 2021.