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Samsung Ends LCD Business: Last LCD patents go to CSOT in China

With the transfer of the remaining LCD patents, the chapter on liquid crystal screens from Samsung Display ends. As reported by The Elec from South Korea, the last patents go to the display manufacturer CSOT from China, which had already taken over an LCD factory from Samsung.

From its own sources, The Elec learned that Samsung Display assigned its 577 US patents related to LCD technology to CSOT back in June. Last month Samsung’s South Korean LCD patents are said to have gone to the Chinese company. According to the report, the complete sale of approximately 2,000 patents around the world has effectively sealed the end of Samsung’s LCD business.

CSOT already has a Samsung LCD factory

CSOT is the abbreviation for China Star Optoelectronics Technology. TCL Technology’s subsidiary manufactures both LCD and OLED displays. In 2020, CSOT had already bought Samsung Display’s LCD factory in Suzhou, China. Buying Samsung’s US patents could be beneficial not only for LCD manufacturing and development at CSOT.

Because of the lack of LCD patents, the parent company TCL is susceptible to legal disputes over patents in the USA, which could thus be avoided, according to The Elec. Voices are raised that the patent transfer could also be used as a means against the rival BOE. BOE has quickly become the LCD market leader in recent years. CSOT could take legal action against BOE with the Samsung patents, so the assumption. Samsung Display, in turn, owns shares in CSOT, which also continues to supply the parent company Samsung Electronics with LCD panels. United and with the patents behind them, BOE can be challenged.

Now focus on OLED

The LCD business became unattractive for Samsung with ever-shrinking margins and little growth potential. Instead, the electronics giant now wants to focus on OLED displays. Samsung is said to want to increase the production of panels with the so-called QD-OLED technology by around 30 percent by the end of the year, reported The Elec in late August.

Samsung now manufactures 55-inch and 65-inch QD OLED displays for the S95B series TVs, as well as a 34-inch model for gaming monitors such as the Alienware AW3423DW or the Samsung Odyssey OLED G8. QD OLED displays with 49 inches and 77 inches are to follow in the coming year.

Mark Goodman

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