Panasonic, Sony join forces for OLED screen development

June 26, 2012 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
The development of large displays based on OLED technology (Organic LED) is gaining momentum. Japanese consumer electronics giants Panasonic and Sony have announced that they will jointly develop next-generation OLED panels and modules for TVs and large-sized displays.

With the move, the Japanese tandem throws its hat into the OLED display ring to take on competitor Samsung. The Korean company past year sold its LCD display business in order to focus on OLED technology. In addition, there are rumors that also Apple computer prepares itself for the launch of an OLED-based TV set.

Panasonic and Sony plan to jointly develop OLED displays and other building blocks for future OLED TV sets by each utilizing their core and printing technologies. According to a Sony press release, their plans include the development of printing method-based OLED technology suitable for low-cost mass production of large, high resolution OLED panels and modules. By integrating their respective technologies, they plan to establish mass production sometimes in 2013.

Sony already has experience in OLED displays for TV applications. In 2007, the company launched an 11-inch model, followed by a 25-inch professional OLED monitor. Sony also promoted the research and development of next-generation OLED technologies such as hybrid OLED element devices and processing technologies that combine deposition and printing methods, thin-film transistor (TFT) drivers such as oxide TFTs and flexible organic TFTs.

Panasonic also is involved in the technology development of large-sized screen, high-resolution OLED panels. The company utilizes particular printing methods which contribute to reducing manufacturing costs for such panels. The company also owns the IP for much of the production equipment technologies required to manufacture large OLED panels.