LG has launched the largest yet of what it hopes will be the successor to LED TVs. The LG 55 EM9700 OLED TV may kick-start a battle over the next-generation of high-quality screens.
The 55 inch OLED TV
Pre-orders are now being taken for LG’s 55EM9700 which was demonstrated at the Consumer Electronics Show in January last year. Orders for the 55 inch OLED TV are scheduled to start in Europe, the rest of Asia and North America in three months time.
Both Samsung and LG announced 55 inch OLED TVs last year but LG has been the first to market at a price point expected to be around £6,300, US$10,300 with that price not reducing, analysts believe, until 2015. However, sales are still expected to grow to 1.7 million by 2014. This release is more about LG cementing itself as market leader in the display sector.
Havis Kwon, President and CEO of LG’s Home Entertainment Company said:
“We are extremely pleased to be able to make this announcement at the start of the new year because we believe that OLED will usher in a whole new era of home entertainment. Not since colour TV was first introduced 60 years ago has there been a more transformational moment. When high definition TV was first introduced 15 years ago, the public’s reaction was ‘wow!’ but when customers see our razor-thin OLED TV for the first time, they’re left speechless. That’s a clear indicator as any that OLED TV is much more than just an incremental improvement to current television technology.”
Smaller OLEDs are already available in high-streets. Samsung uses the technology in its smartphones and Sony’s PlayStation Vita hand-held console also uses OLED technology.
OLEDs (organic light emitting diodes) have been touted as the successor to LCD ( liquid crystal displays) since the new technology allows for darker and deeper blacks and can be made thinner than conventional display methids. This is because OLEDs do not require a back-light or the heavy structure hold them rigid.
Some are predicting that OLED technology will bring the development of a new wave of ‘bendy’, transparent gadgets some of which will be announced over the coming year.
Although the LG55EM9700 marks a size milestone for the technology building large displays using OLED has proved difficult due to production costs and reliability problems. However, there is another technology which, 4K, which may be more suitable for larger scale devices. 4K has four times the resolution of 1080p HD. Dubbed ‘Ultra HD’, 4K may be more suited to larger displays over 100 inches and, in fact, we may see some 110 inches plus 4K models at CES next week.
Current 4K TVs are all LCD-based but OLED is said to offer richer quality so might be a better option for the sub-100 inch market.
Screen size (diagonal): 54.6 inches
Depth: 4mm (0.16 inches)
Weight: 10 Kg (22 lb)
Resolution: 1920 x 1080p