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Samsung Declares End-of-Life for Transparent OLED

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Tony Large

by Tony Large, Technical Director, CDS

As you may know, CDS have been working hard over the past few months to bring together the best possible offering on TOLED display.

Now we have received some unfortunate news: Samsung has officially classified the Transparent OLED Display panel as “End of Life.”

The base panel used in all Transparent OLED products available on the market, this means that we (and other companies) can no longer offer this product going forward.

There has been talk of a “Last Time” Buy as an option. As the panel will not be supported in the future, we do not think this is a good idea. Any issues with the panels such as fragility and reliability would not be rectified or replaced—and that could be expensive for all concerned.

The reason for the EOL notice is quite simply that the global quantity is not enough for Samsung (or any other major manufacturer) to justify the investment.

The End of Life status for TOLED is a really unfortunate situation for all concerned. Such is the nature of large scale manufacture that without large volume take-up on products, fabrication becomes impractical. Coupled with issues of production yield, and fragility, the outcome is not entirely unexpected. We are working closely with clients to develop alternative technologies based on proven TLCD technology.

There is talk of LG also manufacturing Transparent OLED next year. We believe-- after the Samsung decision-- this will now be in doubt if the market is not large enough to justify investment and production capacity! Samsung’s decision will affect all companies offering the TOLED product.

There’s risk now that companies in the Far East, Europe and USA may want to offload product as soon as possible and avoid the risk of being stuck with unsupported parts. This may also include B grade panels that were rejected for Tier 1 use but find their way into the “grey” market.

Our advice to people who have committed to this product is that you should try to cancel/return if possible-- due to the risk of no product and limited support going forward. Or if you are going to receive the product, try to ensure you have 3+ year warranty for parts and labour to protect yourselves and your clients.

CDS appreciates the problems this could / will cause customers. On our own part, we are helping as many customers as we can to find alternative solutions-- whilst still giving long term availability, quality and excellent service.

Tony Large is the Technical Director of CDS. Based in UK, Crystal Display Systems is a leading designer, distributor and value added reseller of flat panel display solutions. They offer industrial TFT LCDs, retail displays, translucent displays, touch screens, videowalls as well as many other digital display solutions.

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