MicroLED TV Revenues to Reach $228M by 2026

Published November 10, 2020

Revenues for microLED TVs will increase to $228 million by 2026, according to the newly released MicroLED Display Technology and Market Outlook Report from DSCC. Although consumers are very enthusiastic about microLED technology, the report finds that microLED will only have a small share of the TV market due to a high retail price.

Sony first demonstrated a microLED TV at CES in 2012 but the product was never released to the general public. Sony later commercialized modular displays for video walls and Samsung Visual Display followed suit by launching “the Wall”. The Wall is also a modular video wall, with pixel pitches of 1.68mm, 1.26mm and 0.84mm.

Samsung’s 0.84mm module started shipping last year with a resolution of 960 × 540 pixels. A 146” display with a 4K resolution required 16 modules, which meant the price was over $300,000. At the beginning of 2020, Samsung unveiled a full range of microLED display sizes, at 75”, 88”, 93”, 110” and 150”. These models have a smaller pixel pitch and are manufactured with a different process. However, the cost will still remain high compared to other technologies on the market.

Source: DSCC MicroLED Display Technology and Market Outlook Report

It will be a huge challenge to compete, even in the premium TV category. OLED and quantum dot LCD are already well established in this space. Several TV manufacturers are also introducing LCD with miniLED backlights, with much improved contrast. Dual Cell LCD is another possible contender. Meanwhile, Samsung Display is preparing to mass produce QD-OLED panels that will compete with LG Display’s White OLED.

Our cost analysis shows that microLED will struggle to compete on price. Moreover, increasing the resolution from 4K to 8K will be very expensive since the consumption of LED wafers depend mostly on the number of pixels. This is why the LED suppliers are focusing on shrinking the chip size, thereby reducing the unit cost of a pixel.

Another important contributor to cost is the mass transfer process used to place individual LED chips on the display substrate. This often leads to a large number of repair steps, which increase process cost and LED consumption. The report looks at redundancy as a possible yield management strategy and defines the scenarios when it becomes a viable approach.

MicroLED TVs will occupy a niche in the very large TV market, where LCD panels are no longer cost efficient. They will be popular amongst home theater enthusiasts but will not become mainstream. DSCC forecasts that microLED displays will likely find more success in other applications, such as AR/VR and Wearables. The report also gives shipment and revenue forecasts for these two market segments, as well as Automotive.

This report explores all the important aspects of microLED technologies, such as mass transfer techniques, color conversion, yield and defect management, backplanes and driving requirements. OEMs and suppliers covered in the report include:

  • Samsung
  • Apple
  • Facebook
  • PlayNitride
  • AUO
  • Foxconn
  • Glo
  • Epistar
  • Aledia
  • Plessey
  • Jade Bird Display

For more information on DSCC’s MicroLED Display Technology and Market Outlook Report, please contact info@displaysupplychain.com.

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Written by

Dr. Guillaume Chansin