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What just happened? Amidst declining demand and oversupply, Samsung Display has announced that it will be ending production of all LCD panels at the company's South Korean and Chinese factories by this year's end.
Following in the footsteps of its home rival, LG, Samsung Display will also be ending LCD production by the year's end, the company announced recently. The development comes after waning consumer interest in LCDs, with Samsung pushing for its Quantum Dot display technology as the next big industry trend.
Demand for LCD technology has been gradually declining over the past few years, with OLEDs increasingly becoming mainstream on TVs and an essential battery-saving feature on the latest smartphones. Even Apple, which remains one of the biggest clients of Samsung displays, helped with this trend by switching to OLED for its flagship iPhones.
Samsung had planned for this transition in October last year when it made a five-year investment of $11 billion into its QD business and decided to convert one of its LCD manufacturing lines at home for helping with mass-production of QD displays. The company aims to set up a new Q1 line of 65-inch QD displays, with production scheduled for next year at its local facility in Asan.
Samsung also notes that existing LCD orders will be supplied to customers "without any issues," and that the company's LCD workforce will be moved to its OLED and QD businesses following this transition.
The company currently operates four LCD factories (two in South Korea, two in China) with its multi-year investment further helping with the transition at home, while it's yet to decide on future operations for its Chinese facilities.