Ultra high-definition (UHD) displays could be a major thorn in the side of OLED expansion. Until last year, the UHD market had been almost non-existent, with just 33,000 sets sold in the 200 million-unit LCD TV market. Since then, shipments have soared around 20-fold, thanks to China. The Chinese want brighter and sharper images but can't afford OLED screens made by LG and Samsung Display.
According to some analysts there is a real risk that UHD may become mainstream and the long-awaited cheaper OLEDs arrive too late to displace it. OLED's long-term potential is huge but it is coming into the market very slowly and at a high price tag. In China, 55-inch UHD models sell for around $1,800. By contrast, an OLED TV of similar dimensions sold by Samsung Electronics costs around $10,000.