OLED TVs were the big news at CES 2012, but repeated delays in availability made me wonder if they would ever make it to market. Well, LG's 55-inch 55EM9600 OLED TV is now being sold in Korea and elsewhere, and it's expected to start selling in the US in March for $12,000. Yeah, that's a lot for a 55-inch TV, but any new technology is expensive at first, and the picture quality is so good, I'm sure that well-heeled enthusiasts will buy it without hesitation.
At CES this year, Samsung was still not saying when its 55-inch OLED TV will ship, how much it will cost, or even what its model number will be. However, it was revealed that two people will be able to watch completely different content at full HD resolution on the same screen by wearing active-shutter glasses thanks to OLED's super-fast switching speed, which is said to be 1000 times faster than LCD.
Meanwhile, Sony and Panasonic unveiled prototype 4K/UHD OLED TVs at CES 2013, both with screens measuring 56 inches. Interestingly, the Sony model stopped working as soon as it was rolled onto the stage at the company's press conference! Engineers got it working soon thereafter, which is when I shot the photo above.
Panasonic's 4K/UHD OLED TV was not announced at the company's press conference, but rather at the keynote address given by Panasonic President Kazuhiro Tsuga the next day. The only info I could glean from the spokesperson standing by the demo unit on the show floor was that the manufacturing process uses a printing technology similar to ink-jet, which could mean that high-volume, low-cost production is within the realm of possibility. Of course, no ship dates or pricing was announced for either set.