PlayNitride raises $50 million, will start trial production of microLED chips by the end of August 2019

Digitimes reports that PlayNitride raised $50 million and is ready to start trial production of micro-LED chips by the end of August 2019. PlayNitride will increase its headcount by 100 employees.

PlayNitride told Digitimes that it achieved a yield rate of 99.9% in its LED transfer (pick-and-place) process. Using mass repair technologies, the company is certain it can achieve commercial viability of its process. The company's mass transfer speed is 10,000 chips per second. This means that for a Full-HD (1920x1080) display it will take just over 10 minutes to transfer the LED chips. A 4K display will take just over 40 minutes.

Will PlayNitride and RiTDisplay supply Apple with MicroLED displays for future Watch devices?

According to Taiwan's Economic News Daily, PlayNitride and RiTDisplay are in talks with Apple to supply microLED displays for Apple's next-generation Watch wearable.

PlayNitride high-brightness high-density passive-matrix wearable Micro-LED prototype (SID 2019)

These are just rumors at this stage, but END says that PlayNitride confirms it is in talks with US customers regarding a 3" full-color Micro-LED display. This interesting as this is not a display we are used to see in most mobile devices - wearables are usually limited to around 1.5" while smartphones today start at around 6".

See PlayNitride's latest flexible and transparent MicroLED prototypes

PlayNitride demonstrated its latest Micro-LED displays at SID DisplayWeek 2019, and the following recently-published video shows the company's booth and prototypes:

So first up we have a 7.56" 720x480 (114 PPI) transparent MicroLED display, which looks very impressive. This is the same Micro-LED display that TianMa demonstrated at its own booth. Interestingly, under direct light from it seems that the display is made from tiles - but PlayNitride says that the squares are made from the stamping process, and the company is developing technology that will remove these marks.

Researchers demonstrate how amorphous silicon TFTs can be used to drive flexible Micro-LED displays

Researchers from the University of Waterloo have demonstrated the successful integration of a-Si:H TFTs and high-efficiency micro-LED chips on large-area flexible substrates. This is the first time that an amorphous silicon was used to drive Micro-LEDs which could pave the way for lower-cost micro-LED display fabrication using existing LCD technology.

2T pixel circuit, before and after micro-LED transfer on a:SI (University of Waterloo, 2019)

the researchers use a 2-TFT pixel circuit, with blue GaN-based micro-LED chips. The low-temperature TFT production process enabled the direct integration onto a flexible flexible polyethylene naphthalate (PEN) substrate. After the TFT fabrication, the micro-LED chips were flip-chip bonded on the TFT, and then transferred onto the flexible pixel circuit using a selective laser lift-off process.

CSoT demonstrates a 3.3" transparent Micro-LED prototype produced in collaboration with PlayNitride

TCL subsidiary China Star (CSoT) demonstrated a 3.3" 232x116 transparent Micro-LED prototype display. The display is built on an Oxide-TFT (IGZO) backplane - CSoT says that this is the first such display ever demonstrated. The transparency is around 45%.

CSoT says that it developed the display in collaboration with PlayNitride that provided the transfer technology for CSoT.