Yole Developpement: the rate of MicroLED patent filing is rising exponentially

Yole Developpement reports that about 5,500 microLED patents (2,500 patent families) have been filed, by more than 350 organizations. The rate of patent filing is growing exponentially - 40% of the patents were filed in 2019.

Patent publication timeline (2001-2019, Yole Developpement)

According to Yole, the recent patent filing shows that the industry is moving from prototypes to commercial consumer displays. Other notable new finding include that startup companies are a major innovation force, Apple is slowing down with its IP (but this could mean that the company is now focused on commercialization), and Samsung pursues multiple development tracks. BOE is another strong microLED IP player, with almost 150 patent familiies filed in 2019.

Samsung aims to start producing real microLED TVs in 2020, partners with Epistar and PlayNitride

Digitimes reports that Samsung Electronics has partnered with Taiwan-based Epistar to supply the Korean display maker with micro-LED chips, as it aims to release its first microLED TVs in H2 2020.

Samsung 146'' micro-LED TV, The Wall

According to Digitimes, Epistar will work together with PlayNitride to supply the microLEDs. Epistar is an investor in PlayNitride. Digitimes says that PlayNitride is currently producing over 1,000 6" microLED wafers per month, and is aiming to increase its production capacity to 10,000 monthly wafer this year.

Samsung and Niio launch an open-call visual art competition to promote Samsung's MicroLED displays

Samsung Electronics and Niio, a premium media art platform, launched an open-call competition called the Samsung The Wall x Niio Art Awards. Artists are invited to send their art works, and the winner will be exhibited internationally on Samsung’s The Wall 4K MicroLED display.

Samsung The Wall Niio Art Awards 2020 call

The competition also includes $15,000 in cash prizes. The show itself will take place in the summer of 2020 at ten locations including Korea, Singapore, the UK and the US. The winners will be selected by a panel of renowned experts in visual arts.

iBeam Materials shows how to deposit both FETs and microLEDs directly on flexible metal foil substrates

iBeam Materials announced that it had successfully demonstrated the ability to produce high-performance GaN Field-Effect Transistors (FETs) directly on thin, flexible and rollable metal foil substrates.

This new technology complements iBeam's microLED deposition technology (demonstrated in the video above), and these FETs can be integrated with microLED chips in a side-by-side architecture. Both FETs and MicroLEDs are deposited on the flexible substrate without any transfer process.

Samsung to update its consumer MicroLED The Wall TVs in 2020

Samsung announced that it will introduce new modular MicroLED TVs for the consumer market (The wall Luxury) in 2020. Samsung says it takes advantage of "production improvements" to introduce new size options - and brighter panels.

Samsung The Wall Luxury - IW008R

In addition to the currently available 75, 146, 219 and 292 inch options, Samsung will now offer 88, 93, 110 and 150 inch displays, that will feature peak brightness of 5,000 nits (up from 2,000 in the previous models).