The reports from the industry already have suggested that Apple with indeed be the first to commercially release a product featuring flexible OLED displays, and although they are certainly not without their own legal disputes with various electronics manufacturers, could this be their window of opportunity to get in first?
Before assuming these reports are accurate – there are suggestions that reports aren’t entirely telling the whole truth about this “raid”.
A spokeswoman from Samsung, Jun Eun Sun is quoted as saying “We have no reason to steal other companies’ technology, as we have the world’s best OLED technology.” LG itself has said that it didn’t report anything to police in connection with the investigation with their spokesman, Son Young Jun saying “The latest investigation is related to large-sized OLED TV panel technology, but the police have made the allegation themselves.”
Of course legal battles alone most certainly do not halt the research, development & production of such technology, and has indeed been the cause of disputes between the companies historically, but it may just be enough to allow Apple the edge. Recently they posted a job advert for a “Display Specialist to lead the investigation on emerging display technologies such as high optical efficiency LCD, AMOLED and flexible display to improve overall display optical performance.”
Flexible being the operative word here, and coupled with their patent for a new shaped iPhone with a “wraparound” display, suggest they are not just on the heels of the two South Korean giants, but firmly in the same race. Indeed they have been for some time – the public release of the Apple patent belies its date of inception – September 2011, way before Samsung’s Brian Berkeley demonstrated and announced their new flexible display. For the record, Apple pulled the job advert fairly quickly, but not before it was noticed by the tech media.
Let’s not also forget that LG are going full-steam ahead to be first to market, with plans to release their first AMOLED flexible display device in the second half of 2013. With all this cloak-and-dagger reports it really would take a company insider to tell the world the reality of what’s going on behind the scenes in the world of flexible OLED tech, and oledflexible.net never like to jump the gun on announcements, but the volume of reports coming out of Asia on a daily basis can only mean that something reasonably big will be announced soon. The burning question is – which company will be the one to make the announcement first, and which product will have the most appeal to the public?