Apple's new patent reveals an OLED display with integrated thermal sensors

Apple continues to file patents for new OLED technologies - a few days ago the USPTO unveiled a new patent that describes OLED displays with integrated thermal sensors. The idea is that OLED change their color and brightness as the temperature changes - they get dimmer when they are hot. This mostly effect red OLEDs. If you measure the heat of different areas in the screen (which may get warmer because they are close to a radio transmitter for example) you can compensate and get more accurate colors.

Apple's patent describes a system that integrates the sensors into the display itself, and these sensors can be used to check the temperature of different zones in the display - or even each individual pixel. A software controller is used to determine how much compensation is required for each OLED pixel.

We're still waiting for Apple to release their first OLED products. Last month Bloomberg posted that Apple's upcoming new iPhones will use a displays with "glass that curves downward at the edges". It's highly unlikely that Apple could use a flexible OLED next year as production capacity for these screens (at both SDC and LGD) is still very small. Reports from Korea suggest that LG Display is very close to striking a deal with Apple to supply flexible OLEDs for the iWatch. At least for the iWatch, with its limited screen size, it's more likely that LGD's capacity will be enough next year for Apple.

Posted: Dec 09,2013 by Ron Mertens


The whole patent system is broken, especially in relation to tech sector. Any hardware patent should not be granted if they didn't have any working prototype to show or perfected.

In the health sector, there is no patent can be granted if you only have an idea on how to produce the drug without having the drug itself for trial run. Why it is allowed for hardware tech?

Samsung and LG can make the flexible display. But the quality is totally different. We will know very soon which is better....