Micro LED, optical waveguide combination to become new mainstream for AR optical systems, says DIGITIMES Research

Justin Chao, DIGITIMES Research, Taipei 0

Credit: DIGITIMES Asia

The quality of optical systems has a high influence on users' immersion experience when using VR, AR, or MR. With the birth of Micro LED-based micro-displays in 2022 and the popularity of optical waveguide technologies among optical combiner developers, the combination of the two technologies is expected to become the mainstream specification for AR head-mounted devices (HMDs), according to DIGITIMES Research's latest study.

The most important components of AR HMDs' optical systems are micro-displays and optical combiners. At the moment, the micro-displays are mostly made with Micro OLED, DIGITIMES Research's study shows.

Compared to Micro OLED, Micro LED has the advantage of providing high-resolution, high-brightness, and low-power-consumption display, while optical waveguide technologies can enhance image quality and are more suitable for high-density design.

With the two technologies gaining development in lowering costs and becoming volume productionable, AR-related companies have been keen on adopting the technologies for their new products.

Factors including luminous efficiency, ambient light transmittance, size, weight, and field of view (FOV) are all important data that need to be calculated when designing an optical system. Although the combination of the optical system technologies is becoming unified, each AR company will still need to make more detailed adjustments to each of the factors in order to maximize the effect.