Samsung: “Foldable Smartphones in 2016”, LG Makes Transparent Displays

Samsung Display and LG Display hold 50% of the worldwide display market share, making them the two leading companies in the field. Obviously, the companies wish to maintain their leadership, reason why we have seen numerous impressive advancements in display technology being showcased by both LG and Samsung throughout these past couple of years. Nevertheless, curved and bent displays / smartphones are only the beginning, as the two Korean tech giants constantly push the limits forward.

Today we came across fresh reports from Korea, suggesting that Samsung might be ready to release foldable smartphones in 2016. Meanwhile LG has developed transparent displays that could be mass produced and pushed to the consumer market in the not-so-distant future.


Samsung Foldable Smartphones; LG Makes Transparent Display

There are four different stages in the evolution of flexible display technology and the industry came to identify these steps as “curved”, “bent”, “foldable” and “rollable”. As a point of reference, the LG G Flex 2 fits in between the first and second stage, so there still seems to be a long way to go before rollable screens will become a reality.

However with all the recent advancements in the field, an official from Samsung Display cited by Business Korea recently said that “the commercialization of foldable smartphones will be possible in 2016”. Samsung has been tinkering with foldable display tech for quite some time, and it was last year at CES 2014 when Sammy unveiled its first foldable display behind closed doors.

In the meantime we also heard reports from IHS suggesting that foldable tablets might become a reality by the end of 2015. This report dates back to February but whether or not Samsung will manage to push the technology to the market before 2016 remains to be seen.

As for LG Display, the company appears to have focused on transparent display technology as well. Transparent panels are currently used in commercial or fighter aircrafts, heads-up displays for vehicles, billboards and so on. It was also used in refrigerators allowing consumers to peek inside, but failed to impress.

Nevertheless, yesterday, a senior official from LG Display told the Korean media that the development of transparent displays is completed and a promotional prototype is already available. However the official added that because the panels need to be mass produced “according to demand and stable supply” it will take some time for the product to be commercialized.

Aside from flexible and transparent display technology, a previously leaked LG roadmap revealed that the company will also join the foldable and rollable display market by year 2017.