Samsung to buy more LG OLED panels
May 17, 2023
By Chris Forrester
Following what were described as “lengthy negotiations”, Samsung and LG Display have struck an agreement which will see LG supply “millions” of white OLED panels for use in Samsung TVs.
Reuters reports that Samsung will buy 2 million panels from LG Display in 2024, and between 3 and 5 million in subsequent years. First units will be delivered in the current quarter but these are seen as test and product development deliveries and not for resale.
The agreement is seen as a major step for both parties. For Samsung it represents a shift in emphasis from LCD-based panels to full OLED displays, and places Samsung in direct competition with LG’s own high-end OLED products but also those units from Sony.
Samsung had already announced it would be ending its own production of LCD units and instead buy Chinese-made panels. However, Samsung is increasing its output of its own QD-OLED versions.
Samsung currently has a 6.1 per cent market share in OLED TVs, and well behind LG Electronics with 54.6 per cent and Sony with 26.1 per cent, according to market research firm Omdia. The deal could push Samsung ahead of Sony.
For LG Display, the Samsung agreement is seen as making economic sense as it is currently running significantly below production capacity on both of its OLED TV factories in South Korea and China, so it needs additional outlets for its production.
Reuters says that LG Display has also delayed its new 10.5G production line for ‘super-sized’ OLED TVs. The agreement is also valuable, and worth at least $1.5 billion to LG Display and represents around 20-30 per cent of its total large-size panel manufacturing capacity and thus helping it get close to full capacity.