LG aims to launch a flexible-OLED powered handset in Q4 2013

Yoon Bu-hyun, LG Electronics's mobile business VP said that LG plans to launch a mobile phone that has an unbreakable flexible OLED display in Q4 2013. LG Display started working on these flexible OLEDs in late 2011 and they consider those displays to have a real value for the mobile solution (as opposed to glass based OLEDs which LG considers inferior to LCDs for mobile applications).

LG/UDC flexible OLED panel prototype

The last time we heard from LG Display regarding their flexible OLED was in January 2013. Back then the company said it was on track to start mass production of plastic based flexible OLEDs in H2 2013. The capacity will be "very limited" and they expect to be able to support just one or two customers. LG Display's flexible OLEDs will use polyimide coated substrate and direct-emission RGB sub-pixels (as opposed to LG's OLED TV which use white OLEDs with color filters).

Panasonic Lumix DMC-G6

Panasonic's new mid-range mirrorless micro four thirds camera spots a 16mp sensor, 7fps burst mode, top sensitivity of ISO 25,600, Full-HD (1080p@60fps) video, Wi-Fi, NFC, a 3" LCD and a SVGA (800x600) OLED EVF with an eye-sensor (so it automatically switches from LCD to EVF when you put your eye to the viewfinder).

The DMC-G6 will ship in June 2013 for $749.

Pantech Perception

The Perception is a mid-tier Android smartphone that is exclusive for US carrier Verizon. It sports a 4.8" 1280x720 Super AMOLED display, 16GB of storage and a 8mp camera.

The Perception will launch on April 25th for $50 with a contract.

LG to bring their OLED TVs to India in H2 2013

LG hosted their Tech Show 2013 in India yesterday, and the company announced that it plans to introduce its OLED TVs in India in the second half of 2013. Currently LG are offering thier OLED TVs in Korea only (for $10,000, they have sold only around 200 units so far). The TVs will arrive in the UK in July, and the US probably in H2 2013 as well.

LG's 55" 55EM9700 is a Full-HD OLED TV that features 100,000,000:1 contrast ratio and fast response time (1,000 times faster than LCD according to LG). The panel is only 4mm thick and weighs only 3.5Kg. The OLED panel is based on LG Display's Oxide-TFT white-OLED with color filters (WRGB) OLED panel.

LG Display to spend over 50% of their capex on OLEDs in 2014

LG Display reported their financial results for Q1 2013. The company saw a small operating profit of about $135 million. It's an improvement over last year, but it's down 74% from Q4 2012. LG Display was mainly hurt by a seasonal slowdown and weaker sales to Apple.

Regarding LG's OLED TV, the company still refers to OLEDs as their "ultimate differentiated product", and says that once their new OLED TV fab will reach 26,000 monthly substrates (still scheduled for the middle of 2014) it will "positively impact the profitability", as OLEDs will carry a higher margin than LCDs.

DisplaySearch lowers their 2014 OLED TV shipments forecast to 300,000 units, sees 10% yields

DisplaySearch's Europe TV market research director, Paul Gray, says that currently OLED TV yields at LG are still very low - at about 10%. Things will improve, but it'll be slow. According to Paul, DisplaySearch now estimates that in 2014 only 300,000 OLED TVs will be sold worldwide:

This is drastically lower then their DisplaySearch's October 2012 estimates of about 1.8 million OLED TVs in 2014. In December 2012 the company said that LG and Samsung will never release commercial Full-HD OLED TVs and will wait to launch 4K ones in 2014. Of course LG did finally launch their 55" Full-HD 55EM9700 OLED TV, although sales are currently very low so you may say this isn't really commercial yet.

US carriers to start shipping Samsung's GS4 this week

US carriers will start shipping the GS4 this week. AT&T will probably be the first one as they aim to start shipping on Tuesday (April 23). Most other carriers (including Sprint, T-Mobile and US Cellular) will ship a week layer (April 30). it will be very interesting to see the market's reaction to Samsung's new flagship phone.

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 1.9Ghaz 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.

The OLED Association confirms a plastic-based OLED for the Galaxy Note 3

The OLED Association posted an interesting article today in which they say that Samsung's upcoming Galaxy Note 3 phone (phablet?) will use a YOUM display (a plastic-based unbreakable flexible OLED). Samsung will unveil the new phone at IFA 2013 (September) and will launch it in Q4 2013.

Galaxy Note IIGalaxy Note II

Samsung YOUM displays use a plastic (Polyimide) substrate, an LTPS backplane, direct-emission RGB patterned OLED sub pixels and thin-film encapsulation (using Vitex's multi-layer technology). It's not known yet what the size and resolution of this particular display, but the OLED-A estimates it will be at least 5.9" in size, but probably will not achieve Full-HD resolution. The Note 3 will also not use a curved display.

Merck opens a new technology development center in Taiwan with a focus on OLED materials

Merck inaugurated their new Taiwanese Technology Development Center, which will develop new material technologies in collaboration with local companies. The main focus of this new center will be OLED materials. Other areas of research will include flexible displays, LED lighting and 3D techniques. Merck already has an OLED R&D lab in Korea.

Merck's OLED product portfolio covers transport materials as well as emitters and other functional layers. The company is focusing on soluble OLED materials, and they say that the performance gap between vapor and printable materials is closed in R&D. Merck OLED materials are "used commercially in many products on the market".

Kyulux - Hyperfluoresence OLED emittersKyulux - Hyperfluoresence OLED emitters