Samsung Display increases focus on small and medium AMOLED production

A report from Korea suggests that SDC has transferred around 500 of its engineers from its large-area OLED development division, or about 30% of them, to its divisions that focus on small and medium-sized AMOLED development.

Samsung Display S-Foldalbe AMOLED smartphone prototype (SID DIsplayweek 2021)

Samsung tri-folding AMOLED prototype

According to the report, the main reason for SDC's change of priorities is due to the need to remain competitive with Chinese-based OLED makers that are offering OLED panels at low costs. Samsung estimates that it is ahead of its Chinese competitors by only a year or a year and half, and it is just a matter of time until Chinese companies catch up with South Korea makers (SDC and LGD).


In some segments of the market, Samsung Display already lost its lead position - for example its share in the foldable OLED market in Q4 2023 is estimated at 36%, with BOE rising to the first position with a 43% share. Samsung still leads the small and medium AMOLED display market, but its market share is now below 50%, for the first time.

Omdia 2023 AMOLED market share chart by shipments

It seems as if Samsung's decision makes sense on several fronts. The company is now starting to build a 8.6-Gen IT AMOLED production line, and IT displays, laptops and monitors and tablets, will be an area of focus in coming years as other display makers have followed suit and are also starting to construct competing lines. Samsung is also reportedly struggling to increase its production yields for tandem OLEDs for Apple, which may also be behind its management decision to relocate its engineering force.

Finally as Samsung Electronics has signed a long-term supply agreement with LGD over large-area panels, its need to produce large-area OLEDs is not as strong as before, especially as the TV market seems to be less of a focus compared to the small and medium sized display market.

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Posted: Apr 06,2024 by Ron Mertens