eMagin signs an agreement with a US-based chipmaker to support its consumer VR/AR OLED microdisplay scale-up

OLED microdisplay maker eMagin announced that it has signed an agreement with a U.S.-based chipmaker to support mass production of its OLED microdisplays for the consumer AR and VR markets. eMagin did not name its new partner, but it did say that this agreement will help it meet the cost requirements of the high volume consumer segment.

eMagin SXGA OLED-XL microdisplay photoeMagin's new partner will provide backplane and interface design support required by eMagin's customers. eMagin is focused on its 2K direct-patterning OLED microdisplays for the VR and AR consumer markets. The company already signed up several customers, here is the latest agreement announced two months ago.

UDC did not yet sign a new agreement with SDC, which expired on December 31 2017

In August 2011 Samsung signed a long-term license agreement with Universal Display which allowed Samsung to acquire and use UDC's patented phosphorescent OLED materials. That important agreement (which generated hundreds of millions in revenues for UDC over the years) expired on December 31, 2017.

UDC announced yesterday that it is in on-going discussions regarding a formal long-term extension of these agreements (the patent license agreement and the OLED material purchase agreement). UDC expects SDC to continue buying materials during these discussions. No time frame has been established for the completion of these discussions.

Denso may invest $450 million in JOLED to help it achieve OLED mass production

FOllowing JOLED's announcement that it started commercial shipments of its 21.6" 4K OLED panels for use in medical monitors in its low-volume 4.5-Gen ink-jet printing production line, it was reported that the Japanese display maker is seeking to raise $900 million to support its plan to start mass producing OLEDs in 2019.

JOLED 4K prototype OLED Monitor (July 2017, Japan)

Reuters reports today that Denso Corp (an automobile parts producers) is considering a $440 million investment in JOLED. Earlier reports from Japan claimed the JOLED received funding commitments from Sony and Panasonic, with both Sumitomo Chemical (who supplies its P-OLED materials to JOLED) and Screen Holdings (who supplies its equipment to JOLED) are likely to take part in the financing round as well. Each of these four companies will invest between $45 to $90 million.

CLSA: OLED capacity spending has peaked, sees no more orders in the near future

Analysts from CLSA returned from a journey to Asia with some interesting notes on the OLED industry. According to CLSA, spending in the OLED industry has peaked and OLED producers are not expecting to place any new equipment orders in the near future. This coincides with IHS estimates of over supply in the flexible OLED market in 2018.

According to CLSA, Samsung has a current capacity in its A3 and A4 (which should be ready by Q2 2018) OLED fabs to produce about 330-385 million OLED displays per year (11 lines, each about 15,000 monthly substrates) which SDC expects to be enough to satisfy Apple's and Samsung Electronics' demand. SDC does not see a strong demand from China's smartphone makers, surprisingly, due to the high cost of OLED displays. Without demand for larger displays (tablets/laptops) or perhaps for foldable devices, SDC's seem to be content with its current OLED capacity.

UDC and BOE sign a long-term OLED agreement

Universal Display announced that it has signed long-term OLED agreements with BOE Technology Group. Under these agreements, UDC will supply phosphorescent OLED materials to BOE. UDC and BOE signed their first agreement in 2014 and it is great to see these evolve into long-term agreements.

BOE Flexible AMOLED prototype photo

BOE started to produce flexible OLED displays at its Chengdu B7 6-Gen fab in October 2017. BOE's B7 fab is the company's first flexible AMOLED line and actual real mass production will probably begin at about Q1 2018. The full capacity is 48,000 substrates per month, but this will only be achieved in the first half of 2019.

Sharp still hopes to form a Japanese OLED alliance with Japan Display

In August 2016 Sharp said that it wants to collaborate with Japan Display to co-develop and produce OLED displays. JDI responded saying that Sharp did not actually reach out regarding such a collaboration, but it seems that Sharp did not give up on that idea.

Sharp 3.4'' flexible IGZO OLED prototype (Apr 2016)

Sharp's stock returned to the Tokyo Stock Exchange first section after a year of absence, and the company's president told Reuters that it is going to ask Japan's government it help it form an alliance with JDI. Sharp is also considering an investment in JOLED.

Sony, Panasonic and Sumitomo to participate in JOLED's next financing round

A few day go JOLED announced that it started commercial shipments of its 21.6" 4K OLED panels for use in medical monitors, in its low-volume 4.5-Gen ink-jet printing production line.

JOLED 4K prototype OLED Monitor (July 2017, Japan)

Following JDI's decision to halt its plans to increase its stake at JOLED, the company is now seeking to raise $900 million to support its plan to start mass producing OLEDs in 2019. According to a report from Japan the company has received commitments from Sony and Panasonic and both Sumitomo Chemical (who supplies its P-OLED materials to JOLED) and Screen Holdings (who supplies its equipment to JOLED) are likely to take part in the financing round as well.

LGD to expand its OLED TV module factory in Vietnam

According to the Korea Herald, LG Display approved a plan to expand its OLED TV module plant in Vietnman. LGD will invest around $1.1 billion USD to expand the Vietnamese plant, which assembles the TVs (the panels themselves are produced in Korea). This fab expansion is planned to be carried out in the next four years in several phases.

LG 2016 OLED TV lineup

The Korea Herald speculates that this expansion plan may have been approved due to Korea's government reluctance to approve LGD's OLED TV fab in China, although the Chinese fab will be an OLED TV fab and not a module plant.

eMagin reports its financial results for Q3 2017

OLED microdisplay maker eMagin reported its financial results for Q3 2017. Revenues in the third quarter were $4.3 million, the same as in Q3 2016. Net loss was $3 million in the quarter. As of September 30, eMagin had $2 million in cash and equivalents and a borrowing availability of $3.7 million.

eMagin XGA096 OLED-XL photo

The results were disappointing, in part due to a manufacturing issue that have since been resolved, according to eMagin. The company says it has experienced a heightened level of activity in the third quarter, both in its commercial initiatives as well as its military programs.

Kopin reports development orders for its OLED microdisplays from several tier-1 companies

In January 2017 Kopin unveiled its first OLED microdisplay, the 1-inch 120 Hz 2k x 2k Lightning panel, and later reported on an "overwhelming" reaction and a first design win with GoerTek. Kopin now updates that it has "received development orders from several Tier 1 global partners".

Kopin Lightning OLED microdisplay photo

In April 2017, Kopin announced that it reached agreements with both OLiGHTEK and BOE Technology to meet its production needs. Kopin has secured capacity from OLiGHTEK's OLED microdisplay fab for the near term (production should begin in Q1 2018) and will also utilize BOE and OLiGHTEK future OLED microdisplay fab.