This follows a similar statement (opens in new tab) from October, when Samsung announced it was shuttering one of its two domestic LCD production lines, due to falling demand and a surplus of supply. At the same time, Samsung announced a nearly $11 billion investment in quantum dot technology.
“We will supply ordered LCDs to our customers by the end of this year without any issues,” the company said in a statement.
In the past, Samsung's quantum dot displays have used a film filled with quantum dots, semiconductor particles only a few nanometers in size, to change light provided from an LED backlight into different colors as they hit it. Samsung named this type of display QLED (opens in new tab), which it developed to compete with OLED, which uses individual subpixels that emit their own light.
Samsung is now hoping to use new research (opens in new tab) to create true, self-illuminating quantum dot displays This research comes off the back of discoveries (opens in new tab) from November, when Samsung researchers published a paper in Nature explaining a new potential quantum dot technology. It replaces cadmium, a toxic chemical previous Samsung QLED panels had used, with indium phosphide. The researchers also claimed improved lifetime by up to a million hours and the prevention of burn-in issues that its previous QLED displays faced.
In October, Samsung also detailed five-year plans for converting its remaining South Korean LCD production line into a quantum dot display production line. The company also runs two LCD production lines in China, which it has yet to comment on beyond its commitment to stop LCD production.
Samsung rival LG said earlier this year that it would suspend (opens in new tab) domestic LCD TV panel production by the end of 2020.
Beyond TVs, Samsung also makes some of the best gaming monitors (opens in new tab) and PC monitors in general. Samsung has plans to release QLED monitors this year, including the Samsung Odyssey gaming monitors that use QLED VA (opens in new tab)panels. But for any upcoming displays, including TVs, that leverage LCD technology only (and no LED backlight), it's possible Samsung could continue buying LCD panels from suppliers.
But OLED's gaining popularity, due to its deep blacks allowing for better contrast, which we consider the most important factor in image quality. OLED has received a bad reputation for burn-in, but new use cases, such as OLED gaming monitors (opens in new tab) and the role OLED can play in finding the best HDR monitor (opens in new tab) or TV, might help explain Samsung and LG's renewed focuses.