Apple files a patent describing a mobile device with a wrap-around flexible OLED

The USPTO unveiled a new patent application by Apple, that describes a mobile device that features a wrap-around flexible AMOLED display (yes, the specifically say it's an OLED display). The whole device is wrapped with the display. The patent also describes a mechanism that determines which parts of the display to use using a camera and a facial recognition software. An OLED is obviously the best choice for a full-color, flexible display that can be efficiently turned-off in some areas.

Apple's patent also describes an option to include multiple transparent displays, overlaid on top of one another. I'm not sure I understand the advantages of using several transparent OLEDs one on top of the other (except for the creation of 3D images). The device shown above represents just one of the concept device designs - Apple also describes "regular" rectangle devices and a cylindrical device. According to the patent the phone body may be totally transparent (made entirely of glass, for example).

DisplaySearch: A 4.8" HD AMOLED costs over $50, Samsung may start using AMOLED in tablets

DisplaySearch analyst Hiroshi Hayase posted about Samsung Display becoming the world's largest small/medium display maker. In his post, he notes that the average price for a 4.3" qHD (960x540) LCD was under $23, while a similar AMOLED costs over $33. A 4.8" HD AMOLED costs over $50 (a 4.7" HD LCD is only $36).

According to iSuppli, the GS4's 5" Full-HD Super AMOLED display costs $75., and the 4.8" 128-x720 AMOLED on the GS3 costs $65. These estimates include the touch panel though (embedded in the Super AMOLED displays).

iSuppli: small AMOLED shipments to grow from 195 million in 2013 to 447 million in 2017

IHS iSuppli says that small AMOLED displays for mobile phone applications will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 26% from 2013 to 2017. Shipments in 2013 will reach over 195 million units, and this will grow to over 447 million in 2017. AMOLED mobile handset market share will grow from 7.9% in 2013 to 15.2% in 2017.

Interestingly, iSuppli estimates that the AMOLED market share for 4" or larger displays will only grow from 23% to 24.4% by 2017. This means that most of the AMOLED growth will come from smaller displays, and that major handset makers besides Samsung (i.e. Apple, HTC and LG) will not adopt AMOLED displays. This seems rather unlikely to me. Especially when you consider flexible OLEDs - and that LG already said that these displays will bring "real value" for mobile devices.

Lux Research sees only 7,000 OLED TVs shipped in 2014

Lux Research posted an interesting blog post, in which they claim that LG's and Samsung's latest OLED TV push is just intended to make these companies look innovative, and does not really mean that the OLED TV market is ready to take off. In fact, Lux thinks that only 7,000 OLED TVs will be shipped in 2014.

This is a very low estimate compared to other research companies. DisplaySearch says that the OLED TV market in 2014 will reach almost 2 million units, while LG Display themselves sees about 600,000 - 700,000 OLED TV shipments in 2014. LG recently announced a $650 million OLED TV Gen-9 fab that will have a production capacity of about 50,000 OLED TVs monthly.

SamMobile: Samsung is developing a high end 10.1" or 11.6" Super AMOLED tablet

After SamMobile mishap with the GS4-LCD-rumor, I didn't think I'll post on yet another of their rumors, but as always happens, many web sites picked up their latest one so I'm going to post as well. This time the blog reports that Samsung is working on a high-end tablet device (that will be called the Galaxy Tab 3 Plus). This tablet will feature a large (10.1" or 11.6", apparently Samsung did not decide yet) Full-HD Super AMOLED display.

SamMobile says that they want to go with a Super AMOLED because many Galaxy Tab 7.7 users still believe it's the best tablet on the market because of the display. They say the company hopes to unveil the new tablet at the IFA 2013 exhibition (September 23), together with the Note 3.

PPG receives DOE award for their work on low-cost OLED lighting substrates

In January 2010, the DOE awarded $1.6 million to PPG Industries to develop "Low-Cost Integrated Substrate for OLED Lighting". This program is now finished and PPG has been recognized by the DOE for significant achievements in advancing OLED lighting technology. PPG was the only company honored in the OLED lighting area during the DOE 2013 SSL R&D workshop.

The team at PPG demonstrated a float glass-based integrated substrate with scalable light-extraction technologies and transparent conductive films for OLED lighting applications. This substrate may lead towards significant cost and performance advantages when compared to conventional indium tin oxide (ITO)-coated display-grade glass substrates.

Issey Miyake installs 99 Velve OLED panels at their JP Tower store

The Issey Miyake store at Tokyo's JP Tower has installed 99 Velve OLED panels in their handbag section. The panels are all 7x7 cm in size. It's not clear by the photo and the PR, but I guess that these panels keep changing their color (the Velve panels are the only color-tunable panels available today).

I'm guessing those are Verbatim's 2nd-Gen panels (as their 3rd-Gen ones aren't in production yet as far as I know).

OLED feud isn't over yet: LG now claims Samsung is illegally using its patents, wants to get paid

Samsung and LG have been fighting over OLED (and other technologies) patents for over a year, but in the last few weeks it was reported that the two companies agreed to resolve their OLED dispute outside of the court of law. Samsung Display's CEO even said the two companies are considering cross-licensing patents.

But this isn't going to be an easy reconciliation. Today LG Electronics is now accusing Samsung Electronics and Samsung Display of illegally using LG's technology, and demands payment from Samsung. LGE is also "doubtful" about SDC's decision to drop a patent suit against LG. LG wants to discuss the payment for these technologies. It's not clear which technolgoies LGE is referring to. We do know that LG claims that the eye-tracking technology Samsung included in the GS4 is patented.

UK retailer says Galaxy S4 pre-orders are up 446% compared to the S3

According to UK Carphone Warehouse, the GS4 is going to be very popular - in the first 3 days of offering pre-orders, there were 446% more pre-registrations than with the GS3 - the most popular Android phone ever. CW's COO says that the S4 "is the one to watch for 2013".

The GS4 features a 4.99" Full-HD (1920x1280, 441 PPI) Super AMOLED display, an Octacore 1.6Ghz Exynos CPU (some models use a Quadcore 1.9Ghz Qualcomm CPU), 2GB of memory, 13 mp camera and a 2,600mAh battery - all this while being a smaller and lighter than the GS3. The GS4 includes a lot of new software features and special UI controls, include the Adapt Display which allows extensive display calibration adjustments.

Reports say Doosan to acquire Novaled for $270-360 million

Update: Doosan announced that it decided not to acquire Novaled.

According to Reuters, Korea's Doosan is going to acquire Novaled, for $270-360 million. The deal is not final, but we hear that they expect to finalize it and announce it as soon as next month. A year ago Novaled announced plans for an IPO on the NASDAQ with an aim to raise $200 million, but indeed it's been a while since we heard any news on the IPO.

In 2011, Novaled reported €17.4 in revenues and a profit of €1.2 million. It is estimated that sales in 2012 were about the same with a higher profit of over €3 million. Obviously they expect sales and revenues to increase sharply in coming years as the OLED display (and perhaps lighting) market takes off. Novaled supplies OLED materials to both Samsung and LG Display, and in fact an industry insider once told me that "everybody uses Novaled's materials".

Cambridge Isotope Laboratories - Deutreated Reagents and High-Purity Gases for OLEDsCambridge Isotope Laboratories - Deutreated Reagents and High-Purity Gases for OLEDs