Samsung has said that it intends to focus on UHD TVs using LCD panels augmented by quantum dot technology, instead of pushing OLED as a commercial replacement for LCD. This is the kind of decision that might mean that OLED nevertakes off in the larger form factors.
Kim Hyun-Seok, the head of Samsung’s TV business, told reporters that the firm doesn’t intend to change its OLED strategy this year or next – meaning that it will look to quantum dots to wring the life out of LCD instead of taking the plunge to OLED.
Samsung is planning on showcasing its new quantum dot tech at CES 2015.
According to the CNET report, the company is fighting back by pouring R&D money into Quantum Dot televisions which, like OLEDs, are a self-emitting technology (they can generate their own light).
Quantum Dots are a difficult technology to understand, but their potential benefits are easier to wrap your head around. Think of Quantum Dots as ultra-tiny particles that will make their own light if electricity is applied to them, or if light is shone on them. That color is directly related to their size, and their color production is extremely stable. Presently, Quantum Dots are used to change the color of LEDs into other colors, eliminating the need for a color filter in an LCD planel, and producing more accurate, well-saturated colors, along with purer whites. Unfortunately, they still rely on LED backlights, which means displays using the technology must still be carefully engineered in order to offer other critical picture quality elements, such as deep black levels, and uniformly bright screens.
Taking a step back from all of the 4K enthusiasm is Joel Silver, president of the Imaging Science Foundation (ISF) and one of the A/V industry’s preeminent video experts. For well over a year, Silver has been cautioning installers that there are other fundamentals in place that should take a higher priority than resolution...
Underscoring what is happening in the video world, Silver emphasizes that 4K is just the first part of a new system. “Frankly [4K] is the least impressive part of the roll-out,” he boasts.
According to Silver, the underpublicized part of the impending video industry’s format updates is the expanded color gamut that could become a part of their final specification.
“The 2020 color space (the International Telecommunications Union Radio Communications ITU-R BT.2020 recommendation) is going to be great for laser color space, but it will be difficult for older TVs.”
“Flat-panel TVs will be expensive,” he continues. “The broadcast space already uses [the spec]. I have a 17-inch HP laptop that was part of a venture with DreamWorks and it includes Rec 709 capabilities and the Adobe Color Space that is much better than HD. The laptop also does DCI (Digital Cinema Initiatives).”
“I can in a two-minute demo show pictures in three different color spaces. Improvements in color gamut are instantaneously superior to the average viewer. Showing Adobe Color Space over Rec 709 is noticeable. Glancing at 4K, the average person doesn’t see [a noticeable difference] because it is just resolution.”
What makes these ULED TVs so good? We posed the same question to Hisense representatives, but they would only divulge the most basic information.
According to a company rep, it starts with 144-zone full array local dimming. Hisense then added quantum dot technology to widen the color gamut and hit a 100% NTSC color space.
Quantum Dot display is said to be the next generation display technology which offers a lot of improvements over the traditional OLED displays. This particular technology has been in the market for some years now and many existing manufacturers have already considered integrating these displays onto their devices. However, several challenges like high cost and production constraints have prevented these manufacturers from mass producing QD displays.
But it seems like these challenges have been overcome as the source states that LG as well as Samsung is planning to mass produce Quantum Dot displays in the second half of 2014. So, these displays could easily end up on the next flagship models from the company scheduled to release next year.
On the show floor at SID 2014, Nanosys' 10-foot-by-10-foot booth won a Best in Show award in the small exhibit category. Nanosys, which makes the quantum dots used in 3M's quantum-dot enhancement film (QDEF), was showing two TV sets side-by-side: one was a conventional LCD TV; the second incorporated both QDEF and Dolby's HDR technology, and the image was compelling. But what does QDEF have to do with HDR?