Thursday, June 27, 2013

Samsung's new OLED TV is now on the market for $13,000

Samsung OLED TV, 55 inch

SEOUL - Samsung Electronics Co Ltd released their new OLED TV in the market for $13,000. It is their first curved, super-thin OLED television to go on sale. It has the same price as their rival LG Electronics Inc.

They are hoping that the success with OLED screens in smartphones (Galaxy S4) will also translate into the TV market. The price is five times more than other popular flat-screen TV.

For now, OLED televisions are still a niche market and Samsung warned that industry forecasts for sales growth were a bit too optimistic.

"We have just introduced our first OLED TV and have to see consumer response to gauge overall market demand," Kim Hyunsuk, a Samsung executive vice president, said.

Research firm DisplaySearch has forecast global industry-wide sales of OLED televisions at 50,000 this year, at 600,000 next year and rapid growth thereafter to reach 7 million in 2016.

LG, which currently offers both curved and non-curved 55-inch screens, is estimated to have only sold a few hundred screens so far after starting sales earlier this year.

Samsung said it will begin selling its curved OLED television outside South Korea from July but did not specify which countries. It has no plans to offer a non-curved one this year.

Organic light-emitting diode technology has long been touted as the future of consumer electronics displays, offering crisper picture resolution, a faster response time and high contrast images. It also allows for curved televisions, which manufacturers say offer a more immersive TV experience.

Both Samsung and rival LG Display, a unit of LG Electronics, have invested heavily in OLED, seeking to emulate the success they had with LCDs, which helped them squash Japanese rivals such as Sony Corp and allowed them to capture coveted roles as suppliers for Apple Inc (AAPL.O).

Samsung is now the world's biggest TV manufacturer, and the South Korean duo now sell almost half of all TVs worldwide.

Samsung also unveiled on Thursday 55-inch and 65-inch ultra-high definition (UHD) TV sets, which offer crisper LCD picture resolution.

Ultra HD TV sales are likely to grow 930,100 this year from 9,600 last year and may jump to 3.9 million sets next year, according to DisplaySearch.

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