OLED is an emerging display technology that uses thin films of organic materials to make efficient, thin and high quality displays. OLED panels can made flexible, rollable and transparent. Korea's LG is at the forefront of OLED development and production - as the world's leading OLED TV producer and a leading developer of flexible OLED for smartphones, wearables, automotive and more. LG's subsidiary LG Display is responsible for OLED R&D and panel production, while LG Electronics produces and markets OLED TVs.
LG OLED TVs
LG Display is the world's leading OLED TV panel producer, and LG Electronics is its largest customer - although LGD also supplies OLED panels to other companies including including Panasonic, Sony, Philips, Loewe, JVC, Hisense, Konka and others. OLED TVs are considered the world's best TVs, offering the best image quality. LG makes a wide range of OLED TV panels, ranging from 42-inch to 97-inch, including bendable solutions and even a rollable 65" TV.
While the basic OLED TV design uses RGB OLED sub-pixels to create each 'pixel' (what is referred to as direct emission OLED, the design used in mobile OLED displays used in Samsung's and Apple's smartphones, for example), LG Display opted for a different OLED TV design. The so-called WRGB (or WOLED-CF) architecture uses four white OLED subpixels with color filters on top (hence W+RBG). The WRGB technology (developed by Kodak and now owned by LG Display) is much easier to produce and scale-up, even though it has some technical disadvantages - and it is the technology that enabled LG to be the first company to actually produce commercial OLED TV panels.
LG Flexible OLEDs
LG currently produces flexible OLEDs (branded as pOLEDs), for both wearable devices and smartphones. LG is the leading supplier of AMOLED displays for Apple's Watch smartwatch and it also supplies OLED displays for smartphones. Click here for more information on LG's pOLED displays and its production capabilities.
LG is also the world's leading automotive OLED producer, and is already supplying flexible OLEDs to Cadillac, Mercedes, and others.
LG Transparent OLEDs
LG has been working on transparent OLEDs for many years. In 2014 LGD unveiled a 18" transparent OLED prototype, and later in 2016 LGD demonstrated transparent 55" FHD AMOLED display prototypes. In 2019, the company started commercial production of 55" FHD transparent OLEDs, finding small markets in signage, commercial, mobility and more.
The latest LG OLED news:
LG Display reports its financial results for Q4 2022, with an operating loss of around $710 million USD (down from a profit of $350 million in Q4 2021). The company says that high inflation and interest rates reduce consumer demand and it sees weak demand and falling prices for both OLED and LCD displays.
LGD says that LCD prices are at an all time low, and the company will accelerate its plans to wind-down its LCD production. During the quarter, the portion of OLED displays out of its total revenues have risen over 50% for the first time. LG Display will also adjust its utilization rate at its OLED TV factories to meet the lower demand.
Earlier this month LG Electronics introduced its 2023 Gram laptop series, that all come with OLED displays. According to the latest update from Korea, these new laptops use displays produced by Samsung Display.
This is the first time that Samsung provides AMOLED displays to LG Electronics. These are rigid OLEDs. LG Display does not produce such displays, it is making only flexible OLED panels.
As we reported a few days ago, The Korean government has officially designated five display technologies as "national strategic technologies", which gives tax breaks to display makers and developers.
The five display technologies include three specific display technologies - AMOLED, microLEDs and QD displays, in addition to deposition technologies materials and TFT equipment and materials. As strategic technologies, the government gives generous (30-50%, depending on the company size) tax credits for R&D and 8-16% tax credits for building production lines for materials, equipment or displays. The government is also considering increasing the tax credits for production lines up to 25%.
Korea-based ETNews reports that Apple has finally committed to adopt OLED displays in future tablets and laptops, and the company has signed a contact with a "local OLED developer" (which means either Samsung Display or LG Dispaly) to develop four different OLED displays.
According to the report, Apple decided to adopt a 10.86" and 12.9" AMOLED displays for future iPad devices, and 14" and 16" displays for future MacBooks. The first OLED iPad will be released in 2024, while the first OLED MacBook will come later in 2026.
This is a sponsored post by Amorphyx, where display industry consultant Ian Hendy has interviewed Amorphyx's CEO John Brewer
Q: Can you start by telling us a little about what Amorphyx does, John?
Amorphyx has several fundamentally new technology platforms that provide for TFT performance improvements in three areas: (1) Switching speeds, with options to move to the Tera-Hz range ultimately, (2) Power, where the IGZO AMeTFT can achieve even lower power performance than today’s LTPO OLED Pro Motion displays and better refresh range, and (3) Small transistor size.
Our technology platforms are lower cost than the alternatives, and move from amorphous and crystalline semiconductor approaches, to devices based on different effects that do not have a semiconductor at all, yet can still drive a display, drive current, deliver grey scale and switch very fast. Or they can operate a flex IC at higher clock speeds than known today.
For now, our main commercial focus is on IGZO AMeTFT which is fundamentally a potential replacement transistor for LTPS or LTPO used in modern OLED phones and has the capability to replace more highly compensated LTPO circuits in modern Smartphone displays due to enhanced stability.
LG Display has an impressive presence at CES 2023, showing many OLED displays, products and prototypes.
The video above starts with LG's automotive displays, which include new 18" slidable OLEDs and some more OLED and LCD displays.
Omdia posted an interesting market analysis, saying that Samsung Display is looking to increase its OLED TV market share, and will push QD-OLED TV shipments strong in 2023. SDC will increase shipments by 141% in 2023, and will continue to increase production.
Samsung's production increase will be met by an increased number of suppliers - not just Samsung and Sony as in 2022, but other companies will start offering QD-OLED TVs (Philips, TCL and Sharp).
A few days ago LG Electronics unveiled its 2023 OLED TV range, which included the OLED G3, LG's slim all-in-one design OLED TV which is LG's brightest OLED TV yet. As we reported, LG Display announced today that its latest OLED panel adopts a micro-lens array to boost the performance.
Branded as META Technology, the OLED Panel is covered with a micro lens array to maximize the light emission. LGD says that this increase the brightness by 60%, and also increases the viewing angles by 30%. The G3 panel has a peak brightness of 2,100 nits.
LG Electronics announced its OLED TV range for 2023. LG is introducing several new technologies, one of which is microlens array (or MLA) to achieve up to 2,100 nits (in the G3 series).
The entry-level model is the A3 series, which offers 4K 60Hz 48-inch, 55-inch, 65-inch and 77-inch WOLED panels. The A3 offers WebOS 23, HDR10, Dolby Vision, Dolby Atmos, HDMI 2.1 VRR and support for G-Sync and FreeSync Premium. The B3 series is similar, but with support to 120Hz.
LG Display announced that it is starting to produce 27" and 45" 240Hz WOLED panels, optimized for gaming applications. The 45" panel is an ultra-wide 3440x1440 (WQHD) curved one.
LG Electronics already unveiled monitors based on these panels last month, the Ultragear 27GR95QE-B and 45GR95QE. LGE did not say when these monitors will ship, but it will likely happen soon if LGD is already producing the panels. Other companies, including Asus and Corsair have also developed monitors based on these panels.