Has Samsung developed its own LTPO OLED technology?

Apple developed its LTPO backplane technology for OLED displays to enable power saving of around 5-15% compared to LTPS AMOLEDs. LTPO was adopted in Apple's Watch Series 4 and Watch Series 5 smart watches - with the panels produced by LG Display using Apple's technology and IP.

According to a new report from Korea, Samsung has recently developed its own brand of LTPO backplane technology and has started to produce such panels - which are adopted by the company's latest smart watch, the Galaxy Watch Active 2 (which recently started shipping). The watch has a 1.2" 360x360 or 1.4" 360x360 round AMOLED displays.

LTPO (Low-Temperature Polycrystalline Oxid combines both LTPS TFTs and Oxide TFTs (IGZO, Indium Gallium Zinc Oxide). In LTPO backplanes, the switching circuits are using LTPS while the driving TFTs use IGZO materials. This leads to power saving of around 5-15% compared to the currently-used LTPS backplanes. The main drawback of LTPO, however, is that the IGZO TFTs are larger and so the display density may be compromised.

Apple LTPO OLED backplane (IHS slide)

According to the new report, Samsung's LTPO panels can lower its drive rate from 60Hz (LTPS) to 1Hz, and driving power is reduced to one third of a comparable LTPS driving power.

Posted: Oct 25,2019 by Ron Mertens