Tucked neatly in the info that Samsung will be starting production of 7th generation AMOLED panels from Q2 next year, is this little nugget: “Samsung Display has continued research to diversify its OLED portfolio to include foldable OLED, chip-on-plastic OLED and 800ppi high-resolution OLED.”
After last year’s fiasco with the Samsung Galaxy Note 7, it was very important for Samsung to have no problems at all with the Samsung Galaxy S8 and the Samsung Galaxy S8+. So the company took extra time, unveiling the phones a month later than usual to make sure that the flagship models would launch without any issues. But over the last few days, several Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ owners in Korea started complaining about a reddish tint that was showing up on their devices.
Pictures of the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ popped up on social media sites as insecure device owners asked others if they …
With “curved screen” and “edgeless display” designs becoming distinguishing features of truly modern smartphones, odds are good that we’ll be seeing plenty of such specimens pop up throughout 2017. The technology is available, Samsung and LG’s flexible OLED screen factories are firing at full capacity, and people seem to love the sleek, futuristic look of smartphones like the Galaxy S8, the LG G6, or last year’s Xiaomi Mi Mix.
The path is clear for all manufacturers willing to update their flagship phone designs, and that’s a great thing! This year, we are very …
Released last week in South Korea (and coming soon to the US), the LG G6 features a display like no other. Called FullVision, this is a 5.7-inch panel with a unique 1440 x 2880 pixel resolution and an 18:9 aspect ratio. The screen also has round corners, and there’s very little bezel around it, this making the G6 the most compact 5.7-inch phone to date.
If you like the idea behind this new display, but you’re not particularly impressed by the G6 as a whole, you may want to wait for LG’s next flagship smartphones, as these will almost certainly feature FullVision …
A recently published Apple patent application might have just given us an idea of how Cupertino will employ the flexible OLED display technology in the future. This application is named “Electronic devices with retractable displays”, and it describes a scroll-like portable device hosting such a screen which retracts into two cylindrical casings.
Before you start looking for a high-tech toga to match, it is worth noting that we probably won’t see Apple pushing this type of gadgets on the market soon due to the current high production costs and limited availability …
Apple supplier Japan Display revealed some details on its second-generation “Pixel Eyes” LCD modules over the holidays, providing us with a look at some of the ways the display industry is advancing. Japan Display’s “Pixel Eyes” modules incorporate touch functionality into the display, and in the second-generation model, there are some exciting improvements.
Using a new sensor structure and new materials, Japan Display has managed to decrease the thickness of the bezel, going from 0.8mm to 0.5mm. A deeper black level is available, and the display can accept input with a stylus as narrow as 1mm for finer detail when drawing or writing.
Perhaps the most intriguing feature in the LCD module is its ability to operate with wet fingers. Many current smartphone screens are unable to work accurately under water and when fingers are wet as water is capacitive and confuses the built-in touch sensors.
iPhones, iPads, and the Apple Watch, for example, don’t respond well to touch with wet fingers or when placed in water, so technology like this could be essential if Apple wants to have a functional display in a device advertised as “waterproof.” Some iPhone 7 rumors have indicated the next-generation iPhone could be a waterproof device.
In a report earlier this week, The Motley Fool highlighted Japan Display’s second-generation “Pixel Eyes” technology and the possibility it could be included in the iPhone 7. Volume shipments on the displays will begin during the current quarter, making them available for possible inclusion in the iPhone 7 when Apple begins ramping up production during the summer months.
While Japan Display is one of Apple’s suppliers, it is not entirely clear if Japan Display screens are used in the iPhone and if the second-generation Pixel Eyes display technology will be used in future products. There have been rumors suggesting Apple and Japan Display have partnered up for a $1.7 billion display plant to produce screens for iPhones in 2016, so it’s not out of the question that we’ll see Japan Display screens in the iPhone 7 or the iPhone 7s.
Regardless of whether Japan Display’s technology ends up in the iPhone, the advancements made by the company serve as an interesting glimpse at features that could be adopted more widely by the display industry in the future, eventually making their way into Apple’s devices.
It’s not the first time we see Samsung filing a patent application for a flexible mobile display, and getting it approved, but in light with the CEO hint that next year we might see a foldable device become reality, the latest patent is worth your attention. The application has been filed last year, and granted July the 7th.
This time the twist is that Samsung has filed for a foldable screen not only of the OLED variety, but an LCD one, too, with roughly the size of one of its Galaxy tablets. The circuit board for the LCD one is on the outside of each half, while with the foldable OLED it is integrated into the package, and bends together with the panel.
Another interesting recent Samsung patent approved by the USPTO involves near-invisible virtual buttons. These are active areas situated near the edge of a touchscreen, which can command the camera app, for instance. The so-called “sensor pads” can apparently be mapped to different functions, too, so imagine a back button that is constantly under the tip of your thumb on the side of the phone, without taking physical space below the screen, or a shutter button that doesn’t take away from the scene framing. If and how are these becoming reality, remains to be seen, but the R&D departments keep inventing and patenting, so at some point we will see a variation of those materialize, hopefully not too much further down the road.
It seems like Samsung isn’t stopping for anyone. With LG and Samsung leading the way in flexible displays, Samsung could be beating LG to the punch. LG was the first to come out with a curved display with the G Flex. Samsung is now coming out with their second curved display smartphone; the Galaxy S6 Edge. Both companies have revealed to Business Korea what they are preparing for the near future.
While Samsung is working on flexible displays, LG is working on transparent displays. This is something that is currently used in cars, planes, as boats for heads up displays. According to LG, the technology is still in its infancy. It has yet to be mass produced by the company.
The unnamed Samsung official on the other hands have bigger ambitions. The official claimed foldable screens are set for 2016. Samsung has been showing off their flexible displays for years, making their fans want the technology by the second. Hopefully the company can stop teasing and finally come out with what they have been advertising for far too long. The company showcased a demo of multiple prototypes back in 2013 showing the possibility of flexible displays. Next year, we are hoping Samsung can deliver on a flat screen TV that I can fold into a smartphone and put in our pockets.