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Sharp increase in demand for AMOLED displays


Rising sales of smartphones and high-end TVs late last year are driving AMOLED growth, says Omdia

Strong sales of premium OLED TVs combined with rebounding smartphone sales last year drove a sharp increase in demand for AMOLED (active matrix organic LED) display panels according to a new report from Omdia.

Total area demand is expected to reach 14.2 million square meters, a 52.0 percent year-on-year (YoY) increase over 2020.

AMOLED display demand will continue to see strong growth in 2022, although at a reduced level compared to 2021, before settling into a steadier demand pattern over the next several years, according to Omdia's latest Display Long-Term Demand Forecast Tracker. The firm projects global AMOLED display demand by area will rise by 11.6 percent CAGR from 2021 to 2028.

"AMOLED has successfully penetrated the smartphone market, where we expect it to hold market share greater than 35 percent in 2021," said Ricky Park, senior principal analyst with the Omdia Displays Research team. "Most smartphone brands have adopted AMOLED panels for their high-end models, and they have recently started to aggressively launch foldable smartphones as well."

Park also noted that Samsung Display, LG Display and BOE have been willing to increase supply capacity for foldable displays, and growing demand for larger and higher resolution screens is also increasing AMOLED demand.

Premium TV Segment Overtakes Smartphones in OLED Demand

Omdia estimates that demand for OLED TV displays increased by 63 percent YoY in 2021. Last year LG Display increased capacity for WOLED TV displays. The company started mass production in 3Q20 at its Guangzhou fab, and production yield stabilized at the plant in 2021. AMOLED panels are a better solution for premium televisions, and more TV brands are willing to launch OLED TVs.

"We expect that, based on area, OLED demand for TV will exceed smartphone demand for the first time in 2021," Park said. "Samsung Display, as the second supplier for OLED TV displays, started mass production of QD OLED TV displays in November 2021, and Samsung Electronics and Sony are planning to launch QD OLED TVs this year."

In addition, mobile PC brands have started to adopt AMOLED displays for their high-end models, and Samsung Display is aggressively increasing its supply volume and product lineup with various specifications. Thinner and lighter displays have improved product quality for mobile PCs and therefore are attractive as a differentiator in the market.

Other IT applications are expected to be next potential markets for AMOLED, Park said, including notebooks, tablets, and desktop monitors.

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