Article last updated on: Sep 05, 2018

What is an OLED?

OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) is an emerging display technology that enables displays that offer better image quality and are thinner and more efficient than current LED and LCD displays. OLED TVs deliver the best picture quality ever, and in the future will also become flexible, rollable and transparent.

Panasonic EZ950 photo

What is a 4K OLED TV?

A 4K OLED TV (also called UHD OLED TV) is an OLED TV that features a resolution of 3840x2160 pixels. While especially useful for large TV panels, 4K has gained in popularity and is now being offered on all premium TVs.

OLED is still a relatively premium technology - and all OLED TVs released from 2016 forward support 4K resolution. The entire LG's 2018 OLED TV lineup support 4K resolution - the flagship Wallpaper OLEDW8 (which attaches to the wall using magnets), the high-end OLED-on-glass OLEDG8 and OLEDE8, the basic OLEDC8 and the entry level OLEDB8.

LG Display is the only OLED panel producer, but it ships its panel to over a dozen TV makers, not just LG Electronics. All of these TVs also support 4K resolution - including the ones from Sony, Panasonic, Philips, Skyworth and more.



Latest OLED 4K market news

Here are JOLED's new OLED display prototypes

Japan-based printed OLED developer JOLED demonstrated several new OLED displays at Finetech Japan last week. We already posted on these new OLEDs, and now we have photos of the new panels.

JOLED 55'' OLED TV prototype (FineTech Japan 2018)

So first up is JOLED's first OLED TV panel. The 55" 4K (3840x2160, 80 PPI) panel offers a 120Hz refresh rate and a color gamut of 100% DCI (135% sRGB) and is printed on JOLED's Transparent Amorphous Oxide Semiconductor (TAOS) backplane.

Will Samsung launch a 4K OLED laptop in CES 2019?

According to reports from Korea, Samsung aims to launch its first 4K OLED Laptop at CES 2019 (January 8). Samsung will offer the laptop in three sizes: 13.3", 14" and 15.6". Samsung Display, who makes these OLEDs, is also in talks with HP, Dell and Lenovo with an aim to supply them with these new OLED laptop panels.

Samsung Galaxy Book photoSamsung's 2017 Galaxy Book 12"

According to the Korean reports, these will be rigid (glass-based) OLEDs produced at SDC's A2 fab. According to reports, SDC's rigid OLED fab utilization rates have dropped to about 65% and in February 2018 we estimated that SDC may try to find new applications for its underutilized OLED capacity - maybe in monitors, transparent signage or indeed laptop devices.

OLED Handbook

BOE demonstrates its first ink-jet printed OLED TV prototype

BOE is hosting its Global Innovation Partner Conference 2018 (BOE IPC-2018, which invited experts from all over the world to see BOE's latest technology and future trends.

BOE 55'' printed OLED TV prototype (IPC-2018)

During the event, BOE unveiled an ink-jet printed 55" UHD OLED TV prototype. This is the first time that BOE demonstrated an ink-jet printed TV (in May 2018 BOE unveiled 5.5" FHD flexible AMOLED which was also produced using a printing process).

JOLED to demonstrate a 55" ink-jet printed OLED TV next month

Japan-based printed OLED developer JOLED announced that it will demonstrate a 55" 4K printed OLED TV at Finetech Japan 2018 (December 5-7 2018). JOLED will also introduce its proprietary printed OLED manufacturing technology. A few weeks ago JOLED announced that it has signed an agreement to develop, manufacture, and sell printing equipment together with Panasonic and Screen Finetech.

JOLED applications slide (AMFPD2018)

This is the first time JOLED will show a 55" OLED prototype (in July 2018 the company did include TVs in its future roadmap). JOLED tells us that it has no plans to produce large size OLEDs at this stage - and this TV is on display just to demonstrate JOLED's printing technology.

LG is now shipping its flagship OLEDW8 wallpaper OLED TV in the UK

LG OLEDW8 wallpaper TV is the company's flagship TV for 2018, and LG today started shipping the new TVs in the UK. The 65" model costs £7,999 (note: affiliate link to Amazon) - or just over $10,000 USD. The 77-inch model (OLED77W8) is not yet shipping, but we know the price in the US will be $14,999. We do not know when the TVs will arrive in the US yet.

The 4K OLEDW8 TV is extremely thin (2.57 mm all the way) and attaches to the wall using magnets - with a thin cable that connects to the sound bar and interface box. The OLEDW8 is powered by LG's new a9 "intelligent processor" that promises better color and fast smart TV (webOS) operations. The TV supports Google's Assistant for natural language control, Dolby Atmos, HDR and 4K HFR.

Panasonic announces its 2018 OLED TV range

Panasonic announced its new OLED TVs for 2018, the FZ800 and FZ950. Both TVs offer the same 55" and 65" 4K WRGB (LGD) OLED panels, and feature Panasonic's latest HCX processor, dynamic LUTs, Dolby Vision, HDR10+, Dynamic Scene Optimizer and extreme 2.5% calibration levels.

Panasonic FZ800 photo

The FZ800 comes with built-in speakers, while the FZ950 offers a Technics-branded 80 Watt Dynamic Blade soundbar.

LG announces its 2018 OLED TV lineup, no big surprises there

Update: it turns out that LG will also release a 65" OLEDG8.

LG Electronics announced its 2018 OLED TV lineup. The company updated all of its models, except the OLEDG7 which will not get a successor in 2018. All the TVs are based on new a9 "intelligent processor" that promises better color and fast smart TV (webOS) operations - except the entry-level B8 which uses a scaled-down version of the chip.

LG OLEDW8 photo

The OLEDW8 will be LG's flagship TV for this year, a wallpaper design OLED TV which attaches to the wall using magnets - with a thin cable that connects to the sound bar and interface box. Like all the rest of the TVs, the W8 will support Google's Assistant for natural language control, Dolby Atmos, HDR and 4K HFR (120Hz).

LGD: OLED holds 25% of the premium TV market share in Europe, details its product roadmap

During a press event in the UK, LG Display said that OLED technology holds 25% of the premium TV market in Europe. The company defines this market as TVs sold over 1,300 Euro. The market share in Benelux and Italy is 35% and in the UK it is 31%.

LG OLED premium TV market share 2016-2017

LGD also detailed its product roadmap. All of its OLED TVs in 2017 support 4K, and the company hopes to add 8K support in 2019 - when it will also release 80" OLEDs.

LGD developed a 77" flexible and transparent OLED display

LG Display announced that it has developed a 77" flexible and transparent OLED display. The display features a resolution of 4K/UHD (3840 x 2160), a 80 mm radius of curvature and 40% transparency.

LG 77'' flexible and transparent OLED smart desk

LG Display demonstrated two possible applications for this display - above you can see the "smart desk" demonstration, and below you can see a commercial retail demonstration. It is not clear from the press release, but it seems that LGD plans to commercialize such a display in the future.