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LG Display talks flexible, transparent, double-sided OLEDs in IFA keynote

Your next TV will be bright, see-through, bendy, and very, very thin. The next release of LG’s OLED screens are wafer thin and extremely flexible, explained Dr. Sang-Beom Han, CEO of LG Display, during the opening keynote of the IFA 2015 conference in Germany.

“We are now living in an era of displays,” Dr. Han told the crowd. “Through displays, we share information. Through displays, we communicate. Through displays, we look into the future and dream about it,” he said, before explaining that the perfect display of tomorrow would combine two essentials: reality and dynamic form.

LG already uses OLED technology in its curved TVs, including the impressive 77EG9900, which can change from curved to flat at the touch of a button on the remote control. You’ll also find it in LG’s smartwatch range and in the curved LG G Flex 2 smartphone.

Dr. Ching W. Tang, the “father of OLED” and a professor at the University of Rochester in New York and the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, then took to the stage to explain how OLED was originally developed and talk up its merits.

LG OLED curved display

“Without backlight and other auxiliary layers, the OLED display is fundamentally less complicated compared to LCD, and in time less costly to manufacture. I have no doubt, given its advanced features and superior performance — foldable, wearable, flexible, and transparent — OLED is the display technology for the next generation,” Tang explained.

We also heard from Prof. Peter Zec, founder and president of the Red Dot Design Award, Udo Heider, Vice President of Merck, and famous movie director Sir Ridley Scott about how OLED is a game changer that will soon dominate the market.

Dr. Han spoke of a future where windows, desks, and even walls are made of displays. OLEDs can take any shape, they’re flexible, and they can be transparent, so there’s real potential for augmented reality in the future. He also suggested that we might soon be folding larger displays up and putting them in our pockets.

On display after the talk was a 55-inch double-sided OLED display from LG that was just 5.3 mm thick, and a flexible wallpaper display with a magnetic backing at just 1 mm thick. The company also showed off a prototype 111-inch “wave” double-sided display constructed from three attached 65-inch Ultra HD OLED displays.

We should see this kind of display technology filtering into the market within the next few years. And after what we saw today – the sooner, the better!