Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Kwon Oh-hyun says that Samsung is getting "huge" orders from other electronic makers for flexible OLED panels. Kwon re-confirms the plan to produce flexible OLEDs in 2012. According to reports, Samsung has converted several OLED lines for flexible panels, and these lines will produce 960,000 OLED "sheets" by the end of year (it's not clear what is meant by a "sheet", and whether this is a monthly or yearly capacity).
The same reports also suggest that Apple may be behind those "huge" orders. We do know that Apple is interested in flexible OLEDs, but it doesn't seem likely that they are actually planning to start using these displays soon. In any case the first "flexible" OLEDs will probably not be really flexible. They will be plastic based though, which means that they are quite shutterproof, in addition to being thin and light. It will also be possible to fix them on curved surfaces.
Samsung already announced that these flexible displays will be branded as YOUM displays. According to earlier reports, in producing YOUM displays SMD will no longer use FMM, but will adopt a hybrid patterning process. In the new process LITI will be used to pattern the red and green materials while thermal deposition with no patterning will be used for the blue material. This enables SMD to achieve over 300 ppi.
Samsung is not alone in its flexible OLED program of course. LG Display is also involved with such displays, and the latest report suggest that LG is readying a 3.5-Gen (730×460 mm) flexible OLEDline in Paju, Korea. Earlier reports suggest that LG will start construction by 3Q 2012, and the new line will become active by the end of 2012. An LGD official said that it will take 1-2 years to develop and verify the process and produce prototypes.
LG Display's flexible OLEDs will use the same technology as Samsung's flexible prototypes - a polyimide coated substrate and direct-emission RGB sub-pixels (as opposed to LG's OLED TV which use WOLED with color filters).