MicroLED technology is a next-generation emissive display technology that promises highly efficient and bright displays that offer superior image quality with infinite contrast and a wide color gamut.

MicroLED can be applied to displays of many kinds - from small displays for smartwatches and AR devices to large-area TV displays. MicroLED displays are often compared to OLED displays - the main display technology that it is rivaling.

What is an OLED?

OLED is the current premium emissive display technology, already adopted in many mobile devices, wearables and even TVs. In 2020 around 500 million OLED displays will ship to companies such as Samsung, Apple, LG, Sony and others. OLEDs can be made flexible, foldable and even rollable and the displays offer the best image quality currently in production.

MicroLEDs vs OLEDs

OLEDs use tiny sub-pixels made from organic emissive materials. Micro-LEDs are somewhat similar - but with an inorganic LED structure. Compared to OLEDs, Micro-LEDs promise to be much more efficient and bright, more durable (higher lifetime) and with a higher color gamut, mostly due to the superior performance of LEDs over their organic counterparts.

The following table shows a comparison between OLEDs and MicroLEDs (it also details mini-LEDs and regular LCDs):

As can be seen, microLEDs has the potential to beat OLEDs in most metrics, including power consumption, lifetime, brightness, temperature range and response time. MicroLED technology is not mature yet, and there are still challenges on the way towards commercialization.



 

The latest MicroLED and OLED news:

Integrated Image Capture: Potentially Key Advantage for MicroLED Displays

This is a guest article by IdeaFarm LLC

A potentially key advantage for microLED displays is the ability to effectively integrate far-field image sensing within the display because of the large “open” pixel area compared to other display technologies. The basic feasibility and advantages of integrating far-field image capture within a microLED display was reported on by IdeaFarm LLC at the recent Displayweek 2021 conference (the major worldwide display technology conference). IdeaFarm proposes to integrate an array of miniature wafer-based camera chips, “microcameras”, on the same substrate as microLEDs as part of the display manufacturing process (see diagram below for an illustration of the concept). Advanced real-time image processing is used to form high-resolution video by combining lower resolution video streams from multiple microcameras.

Under the microLED camera structure

Because of the recent increased attention to improving the videoconferencing experience and the ongoing drive to eliminate bezels and display cut-outs in mobile phones and other devices, interest in including image capture inside displays is growing rapidly. The number of technical papers presented at Displayweek related to including image capture inside the display grew from essentially zero in 2019 to eleven in 2021. So far, under-screen or under-display cameras have been demonstrated in mobile phones with OLED displays, but only one brand is actually shipping and the tradeoffs in image quality and visibility of the camera zone have been noted.

Read the full story Posted: Jun 04,2021

DSCC: microLED microdisplay shipments will remain low even in 2026

DSCC says that the AR and VR markets are set for quick growth, and display sales for AR and VR devices will grow at a CAGR of 52% between 2020 and 2026, to reach $4.2 billion in sales (up from $347 million in 2020). This forecast does not include military applications.

AR and VR display technology market share forecast (2022-2026, DSCC)

The main bulk of the market will remain displays for VR, as actual see-through AR will remain a relatively small market even in 2026. DSCC see microLED technologies providing a breakthrough in this market, but actual microLED display shipments will remain low, around 5%. The market will be dominated by OLED microdisplays.

Read the full story Posted: Apr 20,2021

The MicroLED and OLED Microdisplay Market Report updated to April 2021

MicroLED-Info is proud to announce an update to our MicroLED and OLED Microdisplays Market Report. This market report provides a great introduction to both MicroLED and OLED microdisplays, and covers everything you need to know about next-generation microdisplays. This is a great guide if you're considering to adopt microdisplays in your product and if you want to understand this industry better. The report is now updated to April 2021.


This market report covers everything you need to know about next-generation microdisplays. This is a great guide if you're considering to adopt microdisplays in your product and if you want to understand this industry better.

Read the full story Posted: Apr 06,2021

The OLED Handbook, 2021 edition

We are happy to announce the new edition of The OLED Handbook, the most comprehensive resource on OLED technology, industry and market - now updated for 2021. The OLED industry grows and changes very fast, and the new edition include new details on the OLED mobile display market, the new production lines being established, foldable and rollable OLEDs, the Coronavirus outbreak effects and more!

Reading this book, you'll learn all about:

  • OLED technology and materials and production processes
  • How OLEDs compare to LCD displays
  • OLED TVs, foldable, rollable and transparent OLEDs
  • The OLED lighting industry
  • The future of OLED displays and the challenges ahead

The book also provides:

  • A history of OLED development
  • A guide to OLED investment
  • A comprehensive list of OLED companies
  • A list of existing and planned AMOLED fabs
  • An introduction to quantum dots, micro-LEDs and e-paper displays

The OLED handbook has been read by hundreds of display engineers, business developers, researchers, equipment vendors, OLED material companies, private investors and others who wished to learn more about OLEDs today and in the future. I truly believe that it is the best introduction to OLED displays and lighting!

Read the full story Posted: Jan 19,2021

The MicroLED and OLED Microdisplay Market Report updated to January 2021

MicroLED-Info is proud to announce an update to our MicroLED and OLED Microdisplays Market Report. This market report provides a great introduction to both MicroLED and OLED microdisplays, and covers everything you need to know about next-generation microdisplays. This is a great guide if you're considering to adopt microdisplays in your product and if you want to understand this industry better. The report is now updated to January 2021.


This market report covers everything you need to know about next-generation microdisplays. This is a great guide if you're considering to adopt microdisplays in your product and if you want to understand this industry better.

Read the full story Posted: Jan 15,2021

A discussion on MicroLED efficiency - microLED displays

This article is the second article in a short series of articles that discuss the efficiency of microLED displays. Our previous article discussed the quantum efficiency of microLED chips - with a conclusion that these can be quite efficient.

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

This article will look at the entire microLED display, and also compare it to current LCD and OLED displays. After all one of the main advantages of microLED displays is the increased efficiency (and brightness) compared to current displays. Most people assume that indeed microLEDs are much more efficient than OLEDs and LCDs.

Read the full story Posted: Oct 14,2020

Yole sees impressive growth for OLED and MicroLED microdisplays in the near future

Yole Développement (Yole) says that the microdisplay market is set for impressive growth in the next few years. By 2025, the total market will reach $4.2 billion in revenues (CAGR from 2020 to 2025 at 100%), while microdisplays for AR headsets will generate $1.8 billion.

This optimistic forecast has a warning though - it all depends whether next-generation display technologies will deliver on their promises - and whether actual use-cases will be found and commercialized.

Read the full story Posted: Oct 03,2020

The MicroLED and OLED Microdisplay Market Report

MicroLED-Info is proud to announce a new market report, focused on MicroLED and OLED Microdisplays. This market report provides a great introduction to both MicroLED and OLED microdisplays, and covers everything you need to know about next-generation microdisplays. This is a great guide if you're considering to adopt microdisplays in your product and if you want to understand this industry better.


This market report covers everything you need to know about next-generation microdisplays. This is a great guide if you're considering to adopt microdisplays in your product and if you want to understand this industry better.

Read the full story Posted: Aug 11,2020

MicroLED Displays: Getting Ready for the Future?

This is a sponsored article by Dr Xiaoxi He, Principal Analyst, IDTechEx

MicroLED, believed by many to be the next generation of display technology, has been pursued by players of LED, display, OEM, materials and so on. Differentiated from LCD and OLED, microLED is considered to be the only display technology that has no size limitation. What are the potential applications? What are the hypes and realities? These are questions addressed in the brand-new IDTechEx report, “Micro-LED Displays 2020-2030: Technology, Commercialization, Opportunity, Market and Players”.

Various Motivations Are Driving the Progress of MicroLED Displays

Samsung Display has announced it is ending the LCD business and will focus on its QD LCD & OLED businesses. LG Display has halted its domestic production of LCD panels. Korean vendors tend to reduce their LCD panel production and shift to QLED & OLED. In addition, Panasonic and JDI are also getting out of the LCD business. AUO, Innolux and a few other Taiwanese companies are slowing down investment in LCD or OLED. As a comparison, LCD manufacturing is shifting to mainland China due to cost competence, new line production efficiency and industry chain support.

Read the full story Posted: Jun 23,2020

InZiv Ships MicroLED Characterization Equipment

Israel-based display characterization and inspection equipment maker InZiv has recently announced the shipment of a high-resolution pixel characterization tool to an undisclosed Tier-1 consumer electronics company.

InZiv high-resolution microLED pixel characterization tool closeup photo

InZiv’s tool offers MicroLED defect detection on the wafer and pixel level with unprecedented sub-micron resolutions. Measuring luminescence, spectral wavelengths and 3D structure at the highest resolutions, the equipment enables the identification and the source of defects, accelerating product time to market.

Read the full story Posted: Apr 01,2020