LG Display peels back magnetic wallpaper OLED TV panel

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A model peels LG Display's "wallpaper OLED" panel from its magnetic mount(Credit: LG Display Co.)

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LCD panels have enabled widescreen TVs thin and light enough to be hung on a wall like a picture – assuming you hang your pictures with a VESA-compliant wall mount. But LG Display has gone one step further, showing an OLED panel that can be stuck to a wall like wallpaper – assuming you hang your wallpaper with magnets.

LG Display showcased its 55-inch "wallpaper OLED panel" – or possibly the world's biggest fridge magnet – this week at a media event in Seoul. In comparison to LG's current flagship 55-inch OLED TV that is 4.3 mm thick, the new panel is just 0.97 mm thick and weighs 1.9 kg (4.1 lb). It is also flexible, making it easy to peel off a magnetic mat affixed to the wall.

Competitors such as Samsung and Sony seem to have largely dropped out of the OLED race and pinned their hopes on the next evolution of LCD technology, quantum dot. But the head of LG Display's OLED division, Yeo Sang-deog, promised his company would be scaling up OLED production later this year to meet client demand. Although LG Display is an independent company and supplies panels to a various companies, including Dell, ASUS and Apple, its biggest customer is affiliate LG Electronics.

Earlier this year, LG Display released OLED panels in 55-, 65- and 77-inch sizes, with LG showing TVs utilizing the panels at CES. Now the company plans to go even bigger, with Yeo promising a 99-inch unit within the year. But he says it won't be ignoring the small- to mid-sized displays, with plans to continue improvements to its plastic OLED technology for use in transparent, rollable and flexible displays for wearable devices and vehicle dashboards.

Yeo added that improvements in yields for OLED panels would be a key factor in helping it achieve sales targets of 600,000 OLED panels this year and 1.5 million units in 2016.

"It has taken a year and half for us to raise the yield to this level (for OLEDs), while it'd taken nearly 10 years to achieve the yield for LCDs," Yeo said.

There's no telling when a wallpaper OLED might be headed to the walls of consumers' houses, but the idea of a TV that sticks to a wall like a fridge magnet is sure to be "attractive" to many.

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