With most of the China-based panel makers aggressively eyeing the high-resolution small- to medium-size panel market but lacking experience, Digitimes Research believes that in 2014, China's LTPS small-to-medium-size panels will still mainly be on the HD level. However, in 2015, FHD shipments should start picking up. Whether China makers will be able to mass produce WQHD products in 2016 depends on their technological developments.
China-based BOE, Tianma Microelectronics and China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSOT) were the main players at the FPD China 2014 show in Shanghai, China. CSOT mainly showcased its large-size panel products, while BOE and Tianma had their emphases on small- to medium-size ones.
Although BOE and Tianma have hown great ambition in developing high-resolution small- to medium-size panels, they still need to improve their immature mass production processes.
BOE is mainly pushing the Ultra PPI feature for its small- to medium-size panels and the three panels it showcased at FPD China were: a 6-inch WQHD (2,560 by 1,440) panel, and two FHD (1,920 by 1,080) panels - one 5-inch and the 5.5-inch. They were all samples from pilot production and mass production for them have yet to begin.
Tianma showcased its latest innovation in WQHD-based product lines: LTPS TFT-LCD, AMOLED and embedded touch panels. The maker has already started mass producing WQHD LTPS TFT LCD panels, but the volume remains low due to immature production technologies. Its AMOLED panels, which were also displayed at the show, are still at their lab development stage.
China makers have started producing WQHD products, but a lack of related experience has resulted in low yield rates and unstable production, and it will take some time for them to overcome the issues, Digitimes Research believes.