OLED displays to overtake LCDs in smartphones

August 09, 2016 //By Julien Happich
Although liquid-crystal display (LCD) has dominated mobile phone displays for more than 15 years, organic light-emitting diode (OLED) display technology is expected to become the leading smartphone display technology in 2020, according to research firm IHS Markit.

AMOLED displays with a low-temperature polysilicon (LTPS) backplane will account for more than one-third (36%) of all smartphone displays shipped in 2020, becoming the most-used display technology in smartphone displays, surpassing a-Si (amorphous silicon) thin-film transistor (TFT) LCD and LTPS TFT LCD displays.

“While OLED is currently more difficult to manufacture, uses more complicated materials and chemical processes, and requires a keen focus on yield-rate management, it is an increasingly attractive technology for smartphone brands,” notes David Hsieh, senior director at IHS Markit.

“OLED displays are not only thinner and lighter than LCD displays, but they also boast better color performance and enable flexible display form factors that can lead to more innovative design.”

Samsung Electronics has already adopted OLED displays in its smartphone models, and there is also increasing demand from Chinese Huawei, OPPO, Vivo, Meizu and other smartphone brands. Apple is also now widely expected to use OLED displays in its upcoming iPhone models.

OLEDdisplay smartphone forecast
OLED display shipments will reach parity with LTPS LCDs by 2019, but will overtake those displays the following year. Source: IHS Markit.