Ageless OLED

Ageless OLED

For any commercialized display technology, the lifetime and image quality of the display are of high importance. While OLEDs initially display bright images with a full color gamut, they quickly deteriorate with a loss of brightness and color clarity. With OLEDs finding their way into larger displays, this is simply not acceptable.

The Ageless OLED from DigiDelve solves these lifetime issues.

The different color subpixels of an OLED display deteriorate at varying rates, with the blue subpixels having the shortest lifetime. The lifetime is defined as the point where the luminance, or brightness, of the subpixel reaches 50% of its original luminance. Blue subpixels are currently estimated to have a very short lifetime of 5,000-10,000 hours. This affects the display in two ways:

  1. The overall lifetime of the display is limited by the blue subpixel, so any device that is expected to be in use for more than a year or so cannot use OLED.
  2. The color balance of the display will shift quickly as the blue subpixel degrades.

These problems are demonstrated in the figure below, which depicts how a standard OLED will look after 0, 2,500, 5,000, and 10,000 hours. The imbalance is clearly noticeable after just 2,500 hours.

OLED Color Degradation

At the pixel level, we can see more clearly what is happening to the display over time. A normal, new OLED pixel is shown on the left as an RGB stripe, with the resulting color on the right represented as pure white.

RGB Normal RGB No Fade

Below, the OLED pixel here has aged significantly, but at an even rate. Since the colors degraded an equal amount, there is only a drop in the luminance of the original pure white. The pure white has changed to gray.

RGB Fade RGB Normal Fade

In the final image below, the OLED pixel here has degraded unevenly, which is typical of all current OLED displays. Since the colors degraded at uneven rates, the result is both a drop in luminance and a difference in the color balance. With the blue subpixel degrading at an accelerated rate in comparison to the red and green subpixels, the color is represented as beige.

RGB Uneven RGB Uneven Fade

The Ageless OLED corrects these issues by:

  • Increasing the overall expected useful lifetime to well over 100,000 hours.
  • Eliminating the color shift that occurs during pixel degradation.

As color lifetime improves for individual color subpixels through improved materials, the relative efficiency of the Ageless OLED will not be affected. For example, if base OLED lifetime doubles from the current estimated 10,000 hours to 20,000 hours, the Ageless OLED will also double.

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