For a while we have been hearing that Quantum Dot technology might be the new competitor to LCD and
OLED technology with companies such as Amazon, Samsung and Asus starting to use it in their end consumer
devices such as the Kindle Fire HDX tablets, SUHD Televisions or Zenbooks.
This make us wonder how is this technology different from the others and why is it seen as one of the most
exciting developments in display technology for Industrial applications. Before we get into Quantum Dot,
let’s briefly re-cap the other 2 leading display technologies and their differences.
OLED vs LCD
The first difference is the way the technology works: where LCD screens require a backlight to illuminate its
pixels, OLED technology works from tiny diodes that individually emit a colour of light on demand (Red /
Green / Blue). In turn this gives greater pixel-by-pixel control allowing the colours to be reproduced more
accurately compared to an LCD (90% colour precision compared to 70% with LCDs). The contrast ratio on
OLED displays is also much higher: the pixels turned to off-state to produce only pure black. By comparison
LCDs are transmissive which means they cannot fully block the backlight therefore perfect blacks are not
Source: control rooms GmbH
The viewing angle is another feature that differentiates the two technologies: OLED displays have almost a perfect viewing angle. The quality of the viewing angle on an LCD display will highly depend on the technology used: in an attempt to compete with OLEDs, more displays are now using IPS (In Plane Switching) technology to give much better colour performance and viewing angles compared to standard TN (Twisted Nematic) technology.
So, why should you use LCD in your Industrial application when OLED seems to have better features? The main benefit of LCDs is they have a better lifetime than OLEDs. Even though some improvements have been made recently, LCD still remains a more reliable technology for industrial applications. Backlight life expectancy of an LCD using LEDs is around 40,000 hours compared to a mere 10,000 hours for OLEDs. This would explain why industrial AMOLED displays are few and far between, although we are seeing some of the big display manufacturers investing in this technology to make it more cost effective and resistant.
Another advantage is cost: LCD screens are much less expensive to produce than OLEDs and this is explained by the fact than AMOLED is a more complex technology to manufacturer on a big scale and therefore yields are particularly low. Note that ratio is now increasing and this is why the manufacturing costs of AMOLED displays are expected to drop over the next 2-3years
So, is Quantum Dot the future for displays?
Still an emerging technology, Quantum Dot seems to be a promising alternative to OLED technology as it
enhances the performance of traditional LCDs. This makes quantum dot an exciting prospect for any display
product. But first what is QD and how does it work?
Quantum dots are nanoparticles between 2 and 10 nanometres in diameter which can be compared to 50
atoms or 2-10 billionth of a meter. These dots are incorporated directly onto the backlight of the LCD.
Quantum dots allow the use of blue LEDs rather than white LEDs. White LEDs are in essence blue LEDs with a
yellow phosphor coating. As a result the brightness of the displays can be up to 20% brighter than traditional
LCDs: . This is a promising result for outdoor industrial applications where the display needs to be visible in
Removal of the yellow phosphor coating also result in lower power consumption: LCDs using quantum dots
can see reductions of up to 40%. This results in much better efficiency and life expectancy of the device using
And cherry on the cake: we expect them to be cheaper than OLEDs! As quantum dots are an enhancement of traditional LCDs this means only slight changes to manufacturing processes Industrial applications are always highly influenced by consumer products and as we mentioned before, major companies are already adopting this technology.
Another benefit of Quantum dots is that the colour of the light emitted by these dots is directly related to its
size: by changing the size of these dots it changes the wavelength of the emitting light converting it into red,
orange, yellow or green. This greater level of control results in more precise colour representation with the
visible spectrum increased by as much as 50%. This also results in the production of cleaner whites, which
means better contrast ratio, giving us a LCD with an optical performance very similar to an OLED display.
This is why we at AndersDX are excited to see the evolution of QD LCD in the display industry.
If you want to know more about display technology, don’t hesitate to contact us and speak to our experts.