Affordable OLED TVs still Three to Four Years Away

Posted Fri Jan 10, 2014 at 09:00 AM PST by

According to Samsung, cheap OLED displays are still a few years away, leaving 4K LCDs the company's main focus for 2014.

Though Samsung announced a slew of upcoming TV models at CES this week, the company was relatively mum about new OLED TVs. In an interview with and USA Today, Samsung's executive vice president of Visual Display Business HS Kim expanded upon the reasons for the current lack of 2014 OLED sets, citing cost as the technology's main hurdle.

Currently Samsung's only OLED television on the market is the 55-inch KN55S9C which retails for about $9000. Not surprisingly, that high price point has not been particularly popular with potential buyers. In the interview, Kim elaborated, "Not many consumers tried to purchase OLED TVs at that price. Price was our greatest barrier. So our attempt to expand the market didn't really go well." This high price is a result of OLED manufacturing difficulties and low production yields, and though Samsung initially expected improvements much sooner, Kim now predicts that it will take another "three to four years" for production costs to come down. For the time being Samsung will focus on LCD 4K TVs instead.

While this setback is disappointing, it's not unexpected, especially after the recent news that Sony and Panasonic ran into similar issues. With that said, competing manufacturer LG did show off a new lineup of OLED TVs at CES, so the technology is still seeing support, and hopefully prices will come down to manageable levels soon.

Source: USA Today via Engadget

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Tags: Samsung, OLED (all tags)