ARE OLED DISPLAYS FINALLY READY FOR PRIME TIME?
If what we have seen at CES 2016 is any indication, be prepared to see OLED displays coming soon to more devices near you.
by OLED or organic light-emitting diode displays are not new. The first phones to use active-matrix OLED displays appeared as early as 2008, while the first commercially available OLED televisions made their way to store shelves about three years ago. How do OLED displays work? OLED displays work by passing an electric current through a thin film of organic material to create red, blue and green lights - the basic colors needed to create a TV image. On the other hand, LCDs have pixels that are switched on or off using liquid crystals to rotate polarized light; while the now abandoned plasma technology ignites pockets of gas to excite phosphors.
This method of creating images gives OLED displays numerous advantages over traditional LCD displays. Since OLED displays do not rely on backlights, they can show true, absolute blacks; consequently, brightness uniformity across the entire display is also less of an issue.
OLED displays also enjoy wider viewing angles, higher refresh rates, contrast ratios and have a wider color gamut, which explains why images on OLED displays look so vivid
| MARCH 2016 and photorealistic. The icing on the cake is that because there’s no need for backlights, OLED televisions can be built thinner than LCD televisions. The thinnest OLED televisions are now thinner than smartphones. Why hasn’t the superior OLED display become mainstream already? With so many significant advantages over LCD displays, why then hasn’t OLEDs become the mainstream display?
Like any other new technology, there’re teething issues that need to be addressed. For a time, the limited lifespan of the organic materials used to create OLED displays was the biggest problem.
Early OLEDs would lose their brightness after just 1,000 hours and would only achieve half their original brightness after 14,000 hours. This compares poorly to LCD displays, which would typically lose half their original brightness only after 25,000 to 40,000 hours of use. OLED displays are also prone to burn-in images. Like plasma displays, OLEDs can retain images temporarily or even permanently if left static for too long. OLED displays might finally be ready for primetime Fortunately, these issues have largely been solved. According to LG, the biggest proponent of OLED displays, its OLED displays now have a lifespan of around 30,000 hours before brightness deteriorates – that equals to 10 years of watching television for eight hours a day. Additionally, OLED television manufacturers have also implemented various anti burn-in features into their OLED televisions to prevent burn-in images from occurring.
In fact, thanks to advances in OLED technology, OLED displays might finally be ready for primetime. At CES 2016 we saw, for the first time, OLED displays being used in notebooks and computer monitors. Lenovo is offering optional OLED displays on its new