Credible Rumors Develop of Sony OLED 4K TVs for CES 2017 In January
Stephan Jukic – December 05, 2016
When LG’s OLED 4K TVs emerged in 2014, plenty of technology watchers and even many so-called experts were at the very least skeptical about the success of these then highly expensive new TVs with their exotic display technology. Many even derided OLED in TVs completely and claimed it had no near future.
Well, the last laugh on this belongs to LG because not only have their own 2014, 2015 and 2016 OLED televisions (especially of the 4K UHD variety) turned into the technology of choice for the best in home theater display, they’ve also seen imitation from rival brands. First there was Panasonic with its own OLED 4K televisions this year (with the OLED panels provided by LG) and now, at least according to some reasonably credible rumors, Sony will be picking up on OLED TV display as well.
Sony is no stranger to OLED. The company has already developed professional OLED “Trimaster” monitors that are highly regarded by AV buffs so the leap into OLED 4K TV display isn’t exactly a big one.
Nonetheless, for a North American market in which LG OLED has pretty much been the only mainstream consumer choice for three years now, hearing about a Sony OLED TV for the actual consumer market might come as a bit of a surprise to some readers.
According to recent reporting by John Archer at Forbes, a UK PR representative of another brand had recently mentioned to the reporter that Sony had unveiled a new range of OLED TVs at a UK technology event. After some further investigation, it turned out that a Korean technology website had mentioned an agreement between LG and Sony in which the Korean technology giant had made a deal to supply Sony with OLED display panels which Sony would be unveiling at CES 2017.
Furthermore, according to this post by the Korean site, LG Display had decided to go ahead with its plans to supply Sony with OLED panels in an effort to “increase profitability by diversifying sales channels and increasing production volume”. In other words, LG’s existing scale economy for their OLED TV panels isn’t quite large enough to bring production costs down. Consequently, the delivery of these same panels which go into LG’s OLED TVs to another huge TV brand like Sony, with its own marketing and distribution channels, could bring production demand up to a level that delivers higher more profitability through a larger, more efficient OLED panel manufacturing scale.
On the other hand, these pieces of rumor evidence also show that Sony itself won’t be developing its own native 4K TV OLED display technology. This would truly be an interesting development. Instead, consumers will basically be getting what they can already get from from LG but with a different brand name and TV design.
In other words, if you prefer Sony TV performance, processing technology and smart usability to those of LG but always wanted an OLED TV, 2017 might be your chance to see some healthy variety.
Neither LG or Sony are confirming anything just yet and both companies stayed mute when questioned by Archer.
Sony is already one of the major manufacturer of premium LCD 4K HDR TVs and some of their premium models offer superb display specs by LCD standards. Furthermore, Sony’s new Z9D LCD 4K HDR TVs are basically the best of their kind that we’ve ever seen here at 4K.com. With this in mind, we’re very curious about the result of a Sony move into OLED TV display. Yes, the panels will apparently be pure LG technology but it will be exciting to see what Sony then goes ahead and does with this core LG technology.
If Sony does indeed reveal new OLED TVs at CES 2017, two things we can absolutely be sure of at this point in the 4K development game are that they will come with HDR support and that they will be 4K ultra HD TVs. No premium 2016 TV was released without these two technologies and both will become more entrenched next year.
We’ll be staying on top of this story in the days leading up to CES 2017 and there is a definite possibility that LG or Sony might slip up with a bit more information before CES itself reveals how true or false this rumor is.
Story by 4k.com