2014 Display Technologies

The current trends for improving the color gamut and color accuracy, increasing the resolution and pixels per inch, reducing screen reflections and increasing display brightness for better performance in ambient light will accelerate in 2014 due to new technologies and increased competition.

 

Quantum Dots

Quantum Dots provide an amazing super high technology performance enhancement for LCDs through a unique application of Quantum Physics. By incorporating them within the Backlight the LCDs then produce highly saturated primary colors that are similar to those produced by OLED displays, plus they also improve the brightness and power efficiency at the same time. Instead of using existing White LEDs (which have yellow phosphors) that produce a broad light spectrum that makes it hard to efficiently produce saturated colors, Quantum Dots directly convert the light from Blue LEDs into highly saturated narrow band primary colors for LCDs. And the icing on the cake is that their colors are precisely tunable during manufacture, which means they can produce the exact colors needed for high image and picture color accuracy. This eliminates the lopsided Color Gamuts and White Point errors that are present in most existing displays. You can compare the remarkable difference in their light spectra in Figure 1 below (click to enlarge for details).

Light Spectra for LCDs with Quantum Dots and White LEDs    

This figure compares the light spectra for an LCD that has a Backlight with Quantum Dots with an LCD that has a White LED Backlight.

Note the sharp and narrow peaks for the Kindle Fire HDX 7 that has a Backlight with Quantum Dots, which produces saturated colors that are quite similar to those produced by OLEDs. The very broad spectrum for the iPad mini Retina Display that has a Backlight with White LEDs, produces much less saturated colors.

Quantum Dots are going to revolutionize and reenergize LCDs for the next 5+ years. While they have been under development for many years, in 2013 they made it out of the labs and into consumer products: in some models of Sony Bravia TVs, with Quantum Dots from QD Vision, and in the Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 7, with Quantum Dots from Nanosys, which we recently tested in a Display Shoot-Out article. In 2014, there will be many new LCD Smartphones, Tablets, and TVs with Quantum Dots, as manufacturers rush to stay competitive, but note that many of these products will not mention Quantum Dots in their marketing…

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