The Korea Herald confirms SDC halted its transparent OLED program

A couple of months ago it was reported that Samsung Display decided to start large-area transparent OLED production - before mass production actually began. The Korea Herald confirms this report today, saying that this is due to "low marketability" - or in other words low demand.

It seems that SDC may wish to find other uses for its V1 R&D production line, currently used to produce experimental products and those prototype 55" transparent OLED displays. According to the Herald's report, Samsung may wish to convert this line to mass produce small sized OLED displays as demand for OLEDs in mobile phone is soaring and SDC cannot make enough displays to satisfy its customers.

Samsung announced its 55" mirror and transparent OLED displays back in June 2015, and later announced that it will start shipping those displays in Q2 2016. In May the company announced its first customer (a hair salon in Seoul) - and said that shipments to other customers will only begin in Q3 2016... but of course now it seems SDC decided not to produce any T-OLEDs at all.

Samsung offered these transparent OLEDs to display system providers, and it will be painful news for those partners.. In February 2015, Planar Systems unveiled a 55" Full-HD transparent OLED prototype. Planar started accepting orders for the Planar LookThru displays in November 2015 for $14,995, and the displays should start shipping shortly. Eyevis also announced similar displays, and German-based Lang AG demonstrated a 55" transparent touch-enabled Full-HD OLED.

A couple of months ago Samsung also demonstrated smaller transparent and mirror OLEDs for the automotive market. These 7" are easier to produce compared to the large 55" panels, so hopefully Samsung will continue to develop those OLEDs, and eventually produce these commercially, but this project may have been scrapped too, we do not know.

LG Display also recently demonstrated 55" transparent OLED - following Samsung's lead. Hopefully LGD will continue and develop these displays and perhaps actually bring these to maker soon. Transparent OLEDs are exciting, but will those applications actually create a large enough market? Check out our Transparent OLED market report to learn more!

Posted: Aug 29,2016 by Ron Mertens