Global OLED display market will grow to US$5.5 billion by 2015, from $0.6 billion in 2008, with a CAGR of 37%, according to DisplaySearch. Currently, this growth is being driven by the adoption of active matrix OLED (AMOLED) displays for the primary display in mobile phones and portable media players. Expansion of AMOLED manufacturing capacity will enable production of larger displays for netbook and notebook PCs, desktop monitors and larger TVs. DisplaySearch forecasts that in 2015, TV will pass mobile phone main display to become the highest-revenue application at US$1.92 billion.
"AMOLED displays have become an important differentiating factor for high-end electronic products," noted Jennifer Colegrove, director of display technologies at DisplaySearch. "AMOLED revenues will exceed those from passive matrix OLEDs (PMOLEDs) in 2009, and AMOLED is likely to pass PMOLEDs in terms of unit shipments in 2010, driven by mobile phone main display applications."
The research firm noted that global OLED display revenues in the fourth quarter of 2008 totaled US$156 million, an increase of 17% on a quarterly basis. OLED revenues for fiscal year 2008 reached US$615 million, a 24% increase on a yearly basis.
PMOLED had a weak fourth quarter in 2008, caused by slowing shipments of monochrome and area color OLED. AMOLED experienced a strong quarter, driven by demand for mobile phone main displays, as Nokia, Samsung Electronics and Sony Ericsson heavily promoted AMOLED mobile phones in early 2009.
"The OLED display industry is at a crossover point, as AMOLED passes PMOLED on a revenue basis. PMOLED makers need to investigate new market and product opportunities such as OLED lighting," Colegrove said.
Samsung SDI, whose OLED group merged with Samsung Electronics' mobile display business to form Samsung Mobile Display (SMD) in January 2009, had a strong fourth quarter in 2008. As a result, Samsung SDI (now SMD) took the number one position in shipments with a 31% share, passing RiTdisplay. Samsung SDI (now SMD) has been the leader in total OLED revenues for several quarters thanks to its AMOLED shipments.