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LG Display disregards Samsung’s TV comparison

LG Display CEO points out that Samsung Electronics’ new QLED TVs still need backlights

PUBLISHED : Friday, 06 January, 2017, 11:54am
UPDATED : Friday, 06 January, 2017, 11:55am

By Yoon Sung-won

LG Display says that Samsung Electronics’ new quantum-dot light-emitting diode (QLED) television still has limits as liquid crystal display (LCD) with backlights and thus its comparison to organic light-emitting diode (OLED) TVs is “meaningless.”

The remark came one day after Samsung Electronics showcased its new QLED TV here, comparing it to OLED TV to show that the new TV is better in brightness and colour expression.

LG Display Vice Chairman and CEO Han Sang-beom pointed out that Samsung Electronics’ new QLED TV still need backlights because it is not a self-light-emitting device like OLED TVs.

“TVs with quantum-dot sheets have some 20 per cent penalty in brightness. Even with technological improvements for efficiency, it needs more backlight to realise the brightness reaching 1,500 to 2,000 nits,” Han said during a press conference at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Wednesday. “OLED and QLED is clearly different. If a QLED TV comes out with the self-light-emitting display technology, then it can be comparable to OLED TV.”

Han also said OLED panels differentiate from LCDs not just in the image quality they can produce but also in structural design.

“OLEDs can be verified to become rollerable and transparent,” the vice chairman said.

Showing another potential of the OLED technology, LG Display unveiled what it calls the Crystal Sound OLED (CSO) technology for the first time in the world, Wednesday.

The CSO technology is about building a sound production system inside an OLED panel by tapping into its structural advantage that it does not need a backlight. A television made of a CSO panel can produce more immerse sound compared to ones with external speakers which can only produce reflective sound, according to LG Display.

“The CSO panel can produce front-firing sound and the sound will be particularly clearer to deliver voices,” LG Electronics’ OLED business President Yeo Sang-deok said. “TVs adopting the CSO panels will start to be commercialised this year.”

LG Display said it will follow a two-track market strategy of expanding both OLED and premium LCD panel businesses at the same time.

In the OLED business, the company plans to double the production output of large OLED panels while initiating mid- and small-sized plastic OLED panel production. In the LCD sector, it pledged to increase the proportion of premium products such as ultra high-definition (UHD) panels while seeking for new opportunities in automobile display and digital signage.

“We had difficulties amid intensified global competition last year,” Han said. “This year, we will speed up restructuring focusing further on OLED business to take leadership in both large OLED panel and small- and medium-sized plastic PLED panel sectors.”

To this end, the company said it will double the production of TV OLED panels from last year and continue to boost output of smaller plastic OLED panels for mobile devices to be able to meet market demands.

LG Display said it will expand the monthly production capacity of the eighth-generation OLED panel production to 60,000 within this year, up from 34,000 now, by start operating a new manufacturing line and increasing the yield rate.

As Apple decided to use plastic OLED panels for new new iPhones, the company said its small-sized panel sales for mobile devices made shrink by more than 30 per cent. While admitting that the company has been slow to start the plastic OLED business for mobile devices, it said it will push to attract more demands from Chinese partners to fill the loss.

The company also plans to foster automobile display and commercial display sectors while strengthening business organization dedicated to OLED lighting products.

LG Display disregards Samsung's TV comparison