Samsung and LG Give up OLED in Favor of Quantum Dot TV

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Main players behind OLED TV, Samsung and LG might be giving up the costly technology in favor of more cost affordable quantum dot technology, according to a Reuters report.

Quantum dot TVs basically use optical films with tiny light-emitting crystals into regular LCD, which is a cheaper alternative than costly OLED. A 55-inch quantum dot TV can be priced 30 to 35 percent less than an OLED TV, which could cost five times more, the report cited an analyst saying. LG recently launched a 65-inch UHD OLED TV for 12 million won (US $11,350).

However, there are only a few quantum dot suppliers on the market, including Quantum Materials, Nanoco Group and QD Vision.

British quantum dot manufacturer Nanoco has built a new quantum dot manufacturing plant in South Korea in partnership with Dow Chemical and will start quantum dot production in the first half of 2015.

The world’s second largest TV maker, LG, also announced recently plans of manufacturing both quantum dot TVs in addition with OLED TVs. It will still take some time before OLED prices can be affordable enough to become the new TV technology standard.

"In theory, OLED should become cheaper than LCD once production yields get better because OLED doesn't need a backlight, but at this point both the scale and production yield remain low," said CIMB analyst Lee Do-hoon.

Some analysts though are skeptical about how successful quantum dot TVs will be compared to the widely available and affordable LCD TVs.

"The main lineup for TVs is still LCD TV, so I don't know how much quantum dot matters," said HMC Investment analyst Greg Roh. "I don't think it would signify anything more than bolstering the product lineup."

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