While Samsung Display, an affiliate of Samsung Electronics, is moving to cut its production of liquid crystal display panels, the company is making significant efforts to commercialize quantum dot organic light-emitting diode panels, according to the industry on Sunday.
Samsung Display CEO Lee Dong-hoon told The Korea Herald, “The company is preparing” to launch QD-OLED panels in the near future.
However, Lee declined to reveal when he would make an official announcement on the firm’s investment plan for QD-OLED production.
The Samsung panel maker decided to shut down one of its Gen.8.5 LCD lines with monthly capacity of 90,000 units in Asan, South Chungcheong Province, this month, and it will cut 30,000 units at another line starting next month.
The company used to produce 250,000 LCD panels in Korea every month.
Samsung reportedly plans to convert the line planned for closure to the QD-OLED production line.
It had been rumored since last year that the Samsung affiliate would make around 10 trillion won ($8.3 billion) worth of investments in QD-OLED in April, but this hasn’t taken place yet.
QD-OLED refers to hybrid displays that use both OLED and quantum dots. Samsung is developing panels that adopt blue OLED emitters and quantum dots that convert the blue light to red and green light.
If QD-OLED panels are commercialized, Samsung Electronics is likely to adopt the self-emissive panels for TVs.
The main reason for the latest cut in LCD production is falling profitability of the LCD panel business amid oversupply triggered by Chinese competitors.
However, the decision is viewed as a preemptive measure for the company to shift from LCD to QD-OLED, which could help boost the OLED market.
“With the LCD production cut, Samsung would accelerate commercialization of QD-OLED in order to maintain its leadership in the high-end display market,” said an industry official.
By Song Su-hyun / The Korea Herald (firstname.lastname@example.org)