Topology Research: The VR market will grow 29% in 2019 to reach 6 million units, led by Sony, Oculus and HTC

According to Taiwan-based Topology Research Institute, Sony, Oculus and HTC will continue and dominate the VR market in 2019. Sony will continue to be the leading VR vendor, with sales of its HMD to grow 10% in 2019 to reach 2.2 million units.

HTC Vive Focus photo

The second largest will be Oculus Rift, which will see a surge of 80% in shipments to reach 1.7 million in 2019. HTC will also see a nice sales increase of 33% and the Topology expects HTC to ship 800,00 VR HMDs in 2019. In total, Topology expects the market to grow 29% to reach 6 million units in 2019.

Trendforce sees a VR AMOLED display market shortage in 2017

Taiwan-based TrendForce says that HTC is the current leader in VR headsets - with a market share of 61.4% between April 2016 and November 2016, but the Taiwanese company will not be able to extend its lead into 2017 as it will be hit the hardest from the OLED market supply shortage.

HTC Vive photo

According to TrendForce, in 2017 HTC will ship 600,000 Vive units, while Sony will ship 2.5 million PlayStation VR units and Oculus is expected to ship 1.2 million units. Other brands, all combined, will ship 800,000 units. All of these VR headsets use OLED displays.

Digitimes says HTC and Huawei will adopt EverDisplay's AMOLEDs in new 2015 smartphones

Towards the end of 2014 China's Everdisplay (EDO) started producing AMOLED displays with an initial capacity of 600,000 5" panels per month, and the company already claims at least one Chinese smartphone maker as a customer. Today Digitimes reports that the company (which they refer to as Hehui Optoelectronics, which is Everdisplay's Chinese name) has signed up HTC and Huawei a customer, with several new AMOLED phones expected later in 2015.

Everdisplay's first AMOLED display is a 5" 720p (293 PPI) panel - and it's likely that this will be the panel adopted by HTC and Huawei. On the other hand, EDO is also developing 5.5" and 6" AMOLEDs for mobile phones, so these may end up on the new phones too.

Huawei, HTC and Acer unveil new OLED wearables

Three new wearable devices with OLED displays were unveiled at the MWC tradeshow today. The most interesting one is Huawei's Watch - an Android Wear device that sports a 1.4" 400x400 (286 PPI) circular AMOLED display. It features a heart rate monitor and fitness tracking, six-axis motion sensor and a barometric sensor. Huawei's Watch will ship "in the middle of 2015".

Huawei Watch photo

Another interesting device is HTC's Grip - a fitness tracker that was developed together with Under Armour. The wearable device sports a curved monochrome (white) PMOLED display, which seems to be Futaba's 1.4" 128x16 film OLED (similar to the one used in Garmin's Vivosmart). The Grip includes the usual range of sensors in addition to an internal GPS chip.The Grip will ship in the US in the spring for $199.

Is HTC developing an AMOLED smartwatch?

Bloomberg reports that HTC is developing three new wearable devices. The company will demonstrate the first one at the MWC event later this week, but will only show the watch privately to mobile carriers. The first watch will be based on Qualcomm's Toq device - which uses a small touch Mirasol display.

The second watch wil be based on Google's Now service, and this one will use an AMOLED display. The third wearable device will be an electronic bracelet. That's all we currently know. According to Bloomberg the information comes from a person with "direct knowledge of the plans".

HTC accuses Samsung of strategically declining to sell AMOLEDs in 2010

Back in 2010 Samsung said it cannot meet customer demand in its AMOLED fab. As a result, HTC couldn't produce some phones and had to switch from OLED to LCD in some models. Now HTC says that this was a strategical decision by Samsung which is "using their component supply as a competitive weapon".

HTC DesireHTC Desire

In the meantime Samsung's AMOLED capacity has grown dramatically, and since then HTC returned to AMOLED displays on some phones models. HTC is still buying OLEDS from Samsung, but we know it wants to change a supplier.

iSuppli: small AMOLED shipments to grow from 195 million in 2013 to 447 million in 2017

IHS iSuppli says that small AMOLED displays for mobile phone applications will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 26% from 2013 to 2017. Shipments in 2013 will reach over 195 million units, and this will grow to over 447 million in 2017. AMOLED mobile handset market share will grow from 7.9% in 2013 to 15.2% in 2017.

Interestingly, iSuppli estimates that the AMOLED market share for 4" or larger displays will only grow from 23% to 24.4% by 2017. This means that most of the AMOLED growth will come from smaller displays, and that major handset makers besides Samsung (i.e. Apple, HTC and LG) will not adopt AMOLED displays. This seems rather unlikely to me. Especially when you consider flexible OLEDs - and that LG already said that these displays will bring "real value" for mobile devices.

The HTC One unveiled, uses an LCD display

Back in January it was reported that HTC decided to use AUO's 4.65" OLED panels in their upcoming code-named M7 flagship phone. Yet other reports suggested that AUO still faces production issues and HTC decided to use Sharp-made LCD panels instead. Today HTC unveiled the HTC One phone, and sadly it is indeed using an LCD (4.7" 1080p Super LCD 3, 468 PPI).

So it appears that AUO still hasn't started to mass produce AMOLED displays. Digitimes says that it's likely that they wouldn't be able to start real mass production until 2014, which is a real shame.

Conflicting reports regarding AU Optronics' OLED production status

There are some new conflicting reports regarding AUO's OLED program. According to Digitimes, AUO is still struggling with technology issues (mostly low yields and costs) - and has only managed to produce 126 PPI displays. It's possible that all through 2013 AUO will only be able to make these low density panels, and so only target the entry-level and mid-range mobile phone markets. According to digitimes high-resolution OLED panel orders will go to Samsung instead. Yields at the AUO line is still low at 30%-40%.

According to Chinese site OLEDW, however, AUO managed to overcome the yield issues (reached 60% yield), and HTC will use AUO's 4.65" OLED panels in their upcoming M7 flagship phone (Digitimes says that HTC decided to use Sharp-made LCD panels instead). These 720p panels will sport a high 317 PPI (this panel was unveiled by AUO back in October 2012). OLEDW claims that HTC requires a monthly supply of 2 million panels, and have reserved the entire line output of AUO's 3.5-Gen Linkou, New Taipei City fab (7,000 substrates a month, which is not enough for 2 million panels actually, so some of OLEDW numbers aren't correct). This was already reported several times in the past.

AUO to start AMOLED mass production in Q1 2013, entire capacity booked by HTC

Taiwanese newspaper CENS reports that AUO finally managed to increase its AMOLED yield rate to over 50% (in its 3.5-Gen Linkou, New Taipei City fab). AU Optronics is now set to start mass producing AMOLEDs in Q1 2013, and in fact its entire AMOLED capacity has been booked by HTC.

Actually back in September 2012 Digitimes reported that AUO reached 50% yield, but the company didn't start mass production yet. Hopefully this time the report is accurate.

Kyulux - Hyperfluoresence OLED emittersKyulux - Hyperfluoresence OLED emitters