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OLED display manufacture accelerates

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PMOLED display

The model TX15201 1in PMOLED display from Prosperous has 96x64-dot resolution. It is 25.34x32x1.62mm.

Companies step up efforts to grow the line while shifting emphasis to active-matrix types.

Advantages in performance, thinness and flexibility are attracting China’s TFT-LCD suppliers to invest in the production of OLED displays, with major players pushing the boundaries further toward active-matrix kinds. They are banking on the surge in overall requirement based on the country’s projected shipments in the months ahead. From 66.3 million units in 2012, the volume will reach 165 million by end-2015, according to CCID Consulting.

Compared with TFT LCDs, the category boasts high resolution and self-illuminating attributes. The latter feature eliminates the need and cost for backlighting, and results in slimmer and bendable forms. For this reason, uptake in portable electronics, particularly smartphones, has been on the rise. Globally, 261.2 million displays for the handset type were dispatched in 2013, exceeding 2012’s level by at least 50 percent, said DisplaySearch. In China, more than 70 percent of deliveries are for smartphones.

To enhance their selections dominated by passive-matrix variants, local makers are building up the AMOLED segment. The latter surpasses PMOLED rivals in terms of response time, contrast ratio, vivid colors and viewing angle.

BOE spent nearly $3.6 billion to construct the first 5.5G AMOLED line in China. Operational since late 2013, the facility has a monthly production capacity of 540,000 small and midsize units. Tianma has put up its own plant in Xiamen in Fujian province. Visionox invested in a similar undertaking in early 2014 and will start mass manufacture in 2015, further consolidating its position in the local OLED industry. The company is the country’s top and world’s second biggest maker of PMOLED types.

From these initiatives, output for this more-advanced subcategory is expected to represent half of mainland China’s total by the end of 2015.

Flexible AMOLED displays are another objective on the agenda of major local companies as these have a rapidly expanding market. Growth in sales value by end-2015 is estimated to exceed 300 percent, reaching $94.8 million from $21.9 million in 2013, according to IHS iSuppli. The first from the mainland came from Visionox, which released a 3.5in model in early 2014.

Select maker pool

There are about 100 OLED display suppliers in the mainland now, including less than 10 Taiwan-invested businesses. The key local players are Shanwei Truly, CCO and Irico, besides BOE, Tianma and Visionox. Manufacturers gather in the coastal provinces of Zhejiang, Jiangsu and Guangdong.

The homegrown companies are mostly midsize and large operations churning out monochromatic and full-color PMOLED and AMOLED units. Some of the latter are dedicated to the active-matrix segment. Small enterprises produce monochromatic PMOLED kinds.

The mainland AMOLED maker pool will remain a minority, owing to the steep cost of acquiring new manufacturing and testing equipment from abroad or converting existing TFT-LCD lines. Besides this challenge, mainland companies face stiff competition from foreign players led by Samsung. The last represents more than 90 percent of sales in this subcategory.

Overall, South Korea makers continue to dominate the OLED display market with a share exceeding 50 percent. LG Display is another major supplier. The other key international players include Taiwan’s RiTDisplay, and Japan’s TDK and Pioneer.

To broaden its manufacturing base and improve the mainland’s industry standing, the central government listed the category in the 12th Five-Year Development Plan for Electronic Information Manufacturing Industry. Under the scheme, new entrants will find support in R&D and production through tax and technology subsidies.

PMOLED display

Mainstream lineup

Typical monochromatic and full-color AMOLED and PMOLED displays from mainland suppliers come in 0.5 to 5in, 72x32, 128x64 and 128x96 resolution, and 1,000:1 contrast ratio. In addition to smartphones, the applications include tablet PCs, gaming devices and digital cameras.

Most companies ensure products comply with RoHS guidelines.

The main materials and components used in OLED display manufacture include ITO film, polarizers, chips and UV adhesive. Makers usually obtain the first three from foreign providers, although there are now homegrown companies such as Wuhu Token for ITO film and Silan Microelectronics for chips. They hope to benefit from broader input sourcing options in years to come as localization upstream accelerates.

The majority of suppliers anticipate a price reduction of 5 percent in the months ahead as production expansion speeds up.

Related reports:
Application Watch: Automotive electronics: China TFT-LCD panel, module makers target car infotainment
Capacitive touch panels: Suppliers boost production capacity
SMD LEDs: Companies step up miniaturization efforts


Product gallery

PMOLED display

DLC Display Co. Ltd
(China)

MOQ: Negotiable
Delivery: 15 days
Description: PMOLED type; 1.45in; 160x128 dpi; 144 or 262 colors; 1/128 duty; SEPS525-F00 driver IC; -30 to 70 C operating temperature; 28.78x23.024mm active area; 5.8x30.8x1.6mm

PMOLED display

Golden Morning (HK) Electronic Co. Ltd
(China)

Model: GMS2864G14
Description: 2.42in; 128x64 pixels, 0.43x0.43mm pitch, 0.4x0.4mm size; 100 to 200cd/sqm brightness; 1/64 duty; SSD1309 driver IC; 55.01x27.49mm active area; 60.5x37x2mm panel; 72.1x42.8mm

PMOLED display

IExcellence Technology Co. Ltd
(China)

Model: IEX163QLN01
Description: AMOLED type; 1.63in; 320x320 pixels; 16.7 million colors; 300cd/sqm brightness; MIPI DSI; 29.28×29.28mm active area; 32.08×36.48×0.7mm

PMOLED display

Prosperous Industrial Group Ltd
(China)

Model: TX15201
MOQ: 10 units
Delivery: 30 days
Description: PMOLED type; 1in; 96x64 dots; SSD1305 driver IC; 20.14x13.42mm active area; 25.34x22.5mm panel; 25.34x32x1.62mm

Note: All price quotes in this report are in US dollars unless otherwise specified. FOB prices were provided by the companies interviewed only as reference prices at the time of interview and may have changed.

Disclaimer: All product images are provided by the companies interviewed and are for reference purposes only. Those product images featuring products with trademarks, brand names or logos are not intended for sale. We, our affiliates, and our affiliates' respective directors, officers, employees, representatives, agents or contractors, do not accept and will not have any responsibility or liability for product images (or any part thereof) which infringe on any intellectual property or other rights of a third party.

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