The battle for display dominance continues. Even as LCD technology is being passed over for AMOLED for its literal apparent quality, those liquid crystals can still be a pretty darn colorful product. The argument for their versatility has long been pushed by Japan’s Sharp for the longest time.
However, it could be Japan Display Inc. that will take things to the next level. It has gone against the AMOLED grain — especially as flexible panels are expected to become the rage for Samsung’s patented, but unrealized foldable phones — for flexible, narrow-bezel (perhaps sub-millimeter) TFT-LCD panels. According to Japanese media, first offerings should come next year with volume production within the next three.
While the production cost gap between AMOLED and LCD is beginning to favor the former, we’re not sure if flexible panels bear the same difference. Brightness and service life for AMOLED still also lags behind LCD.
That’s not to say that JDI is all about LCD: it is also one of the rumored competitors that’s vying for Apple’s orders to supply AMOLED panels for the 2018 iPhone. The 2017 crown will almost definitely head to Samsung, the only company with anything near proper capacity for now to fit some units of the speculative iPhone 8. But many foundries, including ones with Foxconn-backed Sharp, are said to be coming online the year after next.