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OLED stands for Organic Light Emitting Diode—a little innovation that changes the way future televisions will be made.

Let’s start with the obvious.  Just look at how thin these televisions are:

Sony XEL-1 side photo

OLED eliminates the need for fluorescent tube backlights which takes away most of a TV’s heft, but with a stronger display than most current TVs.  Because the light emitting diodes are spread across a thin sheet of Plexiglas, the OLED TV is sturdier than a plasma TV (pretty much all of the components of a plasma are encased in glass).

But what about picture quality?  Due to the nature of the pixel array in OLED, there is a higher contrast ration than current televisions.  This means that black is truly black and there are more accurate colors across the scale.  Motion blur is also reduced.

If that’s not enough, due to the nature of the polymers used to transmit light with OLED technology, the TVs are cheap to manufacture.  This, in turn, leads to a more eco-friendly television because there is no longer a need for a power-hungry backlight.

All of these elements are pretty neat, but to me the coolest aspect about OLEDs is that they are flexible.  It is predicted that we’ll soon have little portable televisions printed onto a flexible polymer that you can literally roll up and put into your pocket.  How cool would that be, eh?

Samsung flexible OLED


by John Baker

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