Rollable OLED displays are exciting - as these displays can enable new device form factors - such as TVs that roll up into a small cylinder or a tablet-sized device that can roll-up into a pen.
Rollable OLED TVs
In early 2019, LG launched the world's first rollable OLED device - a TV that rolls into its base. The 65" Signature OLED TV R has three viewing options - full view, line view and zero view. This is a radical new TV form factor, which will be probably be highly expensive when it starts shipping during 2019 (we still do not know the exact release date and price). The TV offers the highest image quality - enabled by OLED technology.
Rollable mobile devices
While LG is leading the race to rollable OLED TVs, many display makers are developing smaller rollable OLED displays for mobile devices. Back in 2016, for example Samsung Display demonstrated a beautiful rollable OLED, a 5.7" display that featured a Full-HD resolution (386 PPI) and a curvature radius of 10 mm. The whole display is 0.3 mm thick and weighs 5 grams. We do not know yet when SDC plans to commercialize such a display (the company is currently focused on developing its foldable OLEDs).
The latest rollable OLED news:
In July 2020 LG Electronics announced that it aims to be the first company to introduce a rollable OLED smartphone - as early as the beginning of 2021. The company has now released a new teaser, showing the upcoming smartphone in action:
Unlike other rollable smartphone designs, LG's phone opens up on the wide size of the phone, to become an tablet form factor. LG did not give any information, specification or release date on what could be the world's first rollable phone.
In October 2020 TCL's CSoT demonstrated some new rollable OLED technologies, and today at CES the company published this nice video you see below that again demonstrates new rollable OLEDs:
TCL first shows a rollable smartphone, that uses a 7.8-inch AMOLED that rolls into a 6.7-inch one. The display features a bending radius of 3 mm and CSoT says it can withstand up to 100,000 sliding cycles.
SCREEN FT announces a new coater for the forming of color filter films for foldable/rollable OLED production
SCREEN Finetech Solutions developed a new coater (SK-F1500H) for color filter film forming with anti-reflective properties. These color filters are intended to be used in flexible (foldable/rollable) OLED devices. The company says the new coater is able to achieve outstanding efficiency by executing the entire process in a single integrated line (6-Gen / 2 substrate).
SCREEN FT explains that in current rollable and foldable OLEDs, the multi-film structure is a weak point that is one of the reasons these display get wrinkled and damaged when bent. One of the problems is in the multi-layered circular polarizers. Color filter films can replace the polarizers, reduce the number of layers, and enable high transmittance and higher energy efficiency.
A few days ago Oppo unveiled the Oppo X, a rollable OLED smartphone that can open up to increase the display size. When closed the Oppo X has a 6.7-inch AMOLED, and when rolled open it can reach 7.4 inches.
According to Gizmochina, BOE produces the rollable display for Oppo. BOE unveiled its first rollable OLED prototype in 2019. According to reports LG Electronics has plans to build a rollable smartphone in early 2021, using BOE's panels.
Yesterday Oppo hosted its Oppo INNO Day 2020, during which it unveiled two interesting concept devices. First up is the Oppo X, a rollable OLED smartphone that can open up to increase the display size:
When closed the Oppo X has a 6.7-inch AMOLED, and when rolled open it can reach 7.4 inches. Inside the phone the display scrolls around a 6.8mm 'scroll motor'. Oppo says it applied 122 patents for this specific phone, with 12 patents protecting the scroll mechanism. This is still just a concept, and Oppo did not disclose any commercialization plans.
Oppo is hosting its Oppo INNO Day 2020 today, and the company is set to announce some interesting new devices. The teaser released yesterday hints at a rollable smartphone:
Hopefully we'll learn more today, but it is certain that in the near future we'll see more rollable OLED smartphone devices and prototypes. LG Electronics already announced that it is set to release a rollable OLED smartphone in 2021.
TCL's CSoT demonstrated some interesting new displays at the DTC 2020 conference a few days ago - including rollable OLEDs, foldable OLEDs, ink-jet printed rollable OLEDs and new microLED prototypes.
In the video above, you can first see the company's latest inkjet-printed rollable OLED, with a size of 17-inch. CSoT says that it managed to reduce the OLED thickness by removing the color filters it used in earlier designs, which improves the flexibility - as you can see this display rolls up very nicely.
LG Electronics announced that it is now shipping the world's first rollable OLED TV, the 65" 65RX OLED TV. The price is set at KRW 100 million (USD 87,000) - that's actually cheaper than expected.
The 65RX rollable TV is currently available in Korea only. The rollable OLED TV was first unveiled in early 2019, but LG did not manage to produce it until now as it faced several technology challenges, including low durability.
According to reports from Korea, LG Electronics is finally set to ship its rollable TV later this month. The price of the 65" Rollable 65RX OLED TV is set at $100,000 - which is quite higher than the earlier estimates of $60,000.
The first rollable TVs will ship in South Korea only, and given this price obviously LG does not expect to ship many of these TVs. The rollable OLED TV was first unveiled in early 2019, but LG did not manage to produce it until now as it faced several technology challenges, including low durability.
DSCC says that the foldable/rollable smartphone market will be one of the fastest growing consumer electronics market - and sales of such smartphones will grow to $105 billion by 2025, in a CAGR of 80%.
The display area used in such devices will grow a 93% CAGR, to reach 1.2 million square meters by 2025. In terms of units, 74.4 million rollable/foldable smartphones will ship in 2025.