Join Transform 2021 this July 12-16. Register for the AI event of the year.


Your dusty old HP printer could be the key to unlocking the next generation of OLED displays.

Well, sort of. Manufacturing startup Kateeva says it’s figured out a way to print OLED displays on giant inkjet printers, which should make it easier for companies to make both flexible and large-size displays.

While OLED displays are more vibrant and efficient than LCDs, they’ve also proven really tough to create on a large scale. Current techniques, which involve a lot of wasted material and a high risk of defective displays, are part of the reason Samsung’s curved OLED TV costs over $8,000.

Kateeva’s method, in contrast, is basically inkjet printing in a slightly different form: Instead of placing ink on paper, the technique — dubbed YieldJet — places OLED pixels on glass or plastic using a movable platform and hundreds of nozzles. The company argues that the technique will both increase yield and lower prices — which is exactly what the technology needs right now.

While other companies — including printer maker Epson — have eyed inkjet printing for a while now, little of their research has resulted in anything tangible. This leaves a huge opportunity for Kateeva, which could grab a big chunk of a market that’s expected to hit sales of $44 billion by 2019, according to findings from DisplaySearch. That’s a lot of OLEDs.

To see how OLED displays are made today, take a look at this somewhat bizarre video from Samsung.

VentureBeat

VentureBeat's mission is to be a digital town square for technical decision-makers to gain knowledge about transformative technology and transact. Our site delivers essential information on data technologies and strategies to guide you as you lead your organizations. We invite you to become a member of our community, to access:
  • up-to-date information on the subjects of interest to you
  • our newsletters
  • gated thought-leader content and discounted access to our prized events, such as Transform 2021: Learn More
  • networking features, and more
Become a member