21.6-inch 4k OLED panels
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21.6-inch 4k OLED panels
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A prototyped 12.2-inch full-HD flexible OLED display
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JOLED CEO Nobuhiro Higashiiriki
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JOLED Inc announced that it has developed a printed 4k OLED panel and started to ship samples in April 2017.

JOLED is a company established by integrating the OLED research and development functions of Sony Corp and Panasonic Corp. This time, the company started to ship samples of a 21.6-inch 4k (3,840 x 2,160 pixels) OLED panel. It plans to develop products using the panel, starting from a medical monitor.

At an exhibition that JOLED had May 17, 2017, JOLED CEO Nobuhiro Higashiiriki said that the printed OLED business had been going as planned.

JOLED was established in January 2015. In an interview with Nikkei Electronics in February 2015, Higashiiriki said, "Our goal is to become able to mass-produce the panel by the end of fiscal 2016 (March 2017). The coming two years are crucial."

This time, commenting on the start of the sample shipment, he said, "We have achieved the verification of the commercialization of printed OLED panels two years after the establishment of the company. It is almost on schedule. We will enter an action phase aimed at a full-fledged business."

JOLED's OLED panels are characterized by the employment of "RGB Printing Method," which uses three types of OLED materials (red, green and blue materials) for printing. Unlike a vapor deposition method, which is currently the mainstream, the RGB Printing Method does not require a high-resolution mask for applying different materials and makes it easy to deal with large-size panels.

Also, compared with a method that combines white OLEDs and color filters, which are used for OLED TVs, the new method realizes a lower power consumption because it does not use color filters, according to JOLED.

The challenge of printed OLED displays lies in service life and reliability. At the exhibition, Higashiiriki started a speed by saying, "I expect you to ask questions concerning service life." He announced that the samples are delivered to Sony and said, "The quality of the sample is high enough (to be delivered to a company like Sony). We have achieved that."