Samsung Expects Larger OLED Panels on Mobile Devices, VP Says

Dec 2, 2008
Masao Oonishi, Nikkei Microdevices

"The warranty period against image burn-in for active-matrix OLED panels is expected to exceed 2,000 hours in 2010, and these panels will be available for laptops," said Woo Jong Lee, vice president of the Mobile Display Marketing Team of Samsung SDI Co Ltd.

He made this comment in the keynote speech for the 3rd TSR Seminar (hosted by Techno Systems Research Co Ltd), which took place in Tokyo, Nov 27, 2008.

In the speech, Lee explained about the future availability of active-matrix OLED panels in mobile devices. First, he pointed out their advantages such as a wide operating temperature range, an excellent compatibility with touch screens, a low environmental load at disposal and a high recyclability. Then, he said that OLED panels meeting the demands of product assembly manufacturers will be used in laptops, which have the most demanding requirements, as early as 2010.

Because OLED panels are all-semiconductor devices, a revolution in the area of, for example, flexible displays will happen once again, Lee said. He claimed that touch-screens will be the standard in mobile devices and that OLED panels have a higher noise resistance than TFT LCD panels because they are driven by DC power.

"Though the ultimate form is in-cell touch panel, capacitance touch-screen will be the mainstream for the next five or six years," he said.

Lee pointed out that entertainment content, especially videos, will be killer applications due to the increase in wireless communication speed. Under such circumstances, OLED panels will be available for use in smartphones and small mobile PCs equipped with larger screens.

"We are expecting 5-inch or larger OLED panels to be the mainstream in 2009 or 2010," he said.

Also, Lee forecast that OLED panels will be priced at about 1.1 times the price of LED panels by 2015 and that 28% of all laptops will feature an OLED panel. Samsung is promoting various kinds of projects utilizing a paper-thin OLED panel embeddable in passports and cards, a car navigation system with a transparent OLED panel installed on the vehicle windshield and so forth.

"Samsung will be ready to offer a greater diversity of applications in about two to three years," he said.

In the keynote speech, Lee introduced himself as the vice president of Samsung Mobile Display Co Ltd. Samsung Mobile Display is a joint venture between Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and Samsung SDI and slated for launch in January 2009. The venture company will specialize in the production and development of small- to medium-size panels. Lee said that he is already working under the new company's name.