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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Seems like such a wonderful game changing concept (OLED printing), but have they hit a major snag? I was hoping for some buzz from them this far into 2015. I'm just not seeing that much interesting in the Kateeva News Releases.

Anyone in the industry have a clearer view than I do of what's going on?
 

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Inkjet-printing system could enable mass-production of large-screen and flexible OLED displays.
Rob Matheson | MIT News Office
February 12, 2015

http://newsoffice.mit.edu/2015/mass-produced-inkjet-printed-oled-displays-0212

"An OLED production line consists of many processes, but Kateeva has developed tools for two specific areas — each using the YIELDjet platform. The first tool, called YIELDjet FLEX, was engineered to enable thin-film encapsulation (TFE). TFE is the process that gives thinness and flexibility to OLED devices; Kateeva hopes flexible displays produced by YIELDjet FLEX will hit the shelves by the end of the year.
The second tool, which will debut later this year, aims to cut costs and defects associated with patterning OLED materials onto substrates, in order to make producing 55-inch screens easier."


This is probably a reliable source, since Conor Madigan came from MIT so the writer probably has had access to him or others in the company.

Samsung provided additional funding to Kateeva just a few months ago, so they must feel that the technology looks very promising.
 

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Seems like such a wonderful game changing concept (OLED printing), but have they hit a major snag? I was hoping for some buzz from them this far into 2015. I'm just not seeing that much interesting in the Kateeva News Releases.

Anyone in the industry have a clearer view than I do of what's going on?
Companies have been talking about inkjet printed OLED displays for more than a decade. So far no one has been able to make it viable.
 

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I think expecting regular announcements is a fundamental misapprehension of the way this stuff works. Especially because Kateeva is an equipment supplier, not a display maker.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I think expecting regular announcements is a fundamental misapprehension of the way this stuff works. Especially because Kateeva is an equipment supplier, not a display maker.
Perhaps. I'm wasn't "expecting" anything per se, just hoping, but in any case in the B2B startups I was involved with years ago, we lived and died by releasing positive progress information. It was critical in attracting additional investors, as well as giving the existing contract customers a warm fuzzy feeling. So I figured it might be the same dynamic here, but either way, I'm asking if anyone knows anything.
 

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Perhaps. I'm wasn't "expecting" anything per se, just hoping, but in any case in the B2B startups I was involved with years ago, we lived and died by releasing positive progress information. It was critical in attracting additional investors, as well as giving the existing contract customers a warm fuzzy feeling. So I figured it might be the same dynamic here, but either way, I'm asking if anyone knows anything.
When your in the mode of needing to attract additional investment, customers, and industrial partners, absolutely. But once you have a tiger by the tail and your success rides on execution and keeping an important lead customer happy (and making them successful), going stealth-mode is very common.

So here's some wild speculation regarding Samsung, WOLED and Kateeva:

As Samsung explored using Kateeva technology for their RGB OLEDs, they discovered similar industrialization issues for patterning the required RGB tiles in a cost-effective and high-yield manner. But they realized that it was a much more cost-effective way to deposit layers of OLED materials than the deposition technology being used by LG.

Hence the decision to abandon RGB OLED and leapfrog LG with a lower-cost manufacturing technique for WOLED.

My point is, just because Samsung has seemingly abandoned RGB OLED TV does not necessarily mean that Kateeva is no longer part of the equation.

In fact, if Kateeva were no longer part of the equation, I suspect we'd be hearing much more from them, (for exactly the reasons you outlined) than if they were still engaged with Samsung on something important to their future...
 

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Regardless, when Samsung is charging what they're charging for LCD (essentially comparable to OLED), it's naïve to think that you'll see any bargains from them even IF they actually produce tangible, large-screen OLED products.

By the time there is any tangible product (IF there is any tangible product), it's not unreasonable to think that LG will have a far more competitive pricing structure for their OLEDs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Regardless, when Samsung is charging what they're charging for LCD (essentially comparable to OLED), it's naïve to think that you'll see any bargains from them even IF they actually produce tangible, large-screen OLED products.

By the time there is any tangible product (IF there is any tangible product), it's not unreasonable to think that LG will have a far more competitive pricing structure for their OLEDs.
I'd normally agree, but I think there's a chance that YIELDjet style production might suddenly lower production costs dramatically, even lower than however low LGD is able to descend to, and whomever is at the helm for this might use that to compete directly with the bottom price dwelling LCD's. This would be a weird disruption. But I'm far from convinced either way.
 

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I seriously doubt it will happen in my life time. Cannon, the inventor or bubble jet printer, tried it a decade ago and eventually gave up. But who knows. I though OLED TV is a pipe dream too until LG showed up.
 

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I highly doubt a kateeva OLED will appear any time soon - let's face it we haven't even seen a tech demo released at any of the trade shows yet and you can bet your bottom dollar Samsung would have shown us something if they were anywhere near the finish line.
 

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I would hope we would see a Kateeva-printed large-screen OLED prototype at CES in 2016. Or maybe earlier at this year's IFA.

When asked when we would see actual OLED TV products on the market using Kateeva's printing, their president in this interview last November said "We believe the first mass-production lines could be installed in 2016, so 2017 is a real possibility."

Doesn't sound like anything will be coming anytime soon to me.
 

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Perhaps one day will be looking at the end of LCD and OLED emerging as the preferred display technology of choice and LCD prices of today to boot, though the JS9500 is 6000 dollars so using that particular model as a parity for larger screen OLED prices might not be the way to go about it.
 

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I'd normally agree, but I think there's a chance that YIELDjet style production might suddenly lower production costs dramatically,
To be clear, the target I've heard described is "high-end LCD plus 10% or so" with a timeframe around 2016-17.
...even lower than however low LGD is able to descend to, and whomever is at the helm for this might use that to compete directly with the bottom price dwelling LCD's. This would be a weird disruption. But I'm far from convinced either way.
So I don't really see it as especially disruptive to some hypothetical cost structure LG keeps sort of pretending exists. And if it exists for LG, the timeframe would be very similar.

My excitement has always been based on the "more is better" theory of OLED competition. And also the "not all our eggs in one basket" theory (namely trusting LG and only LG to drive an entire industry).
 
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Companies have been talking about mass market large format OLED displays for more than two decades. So far no one has been able to make it viable.
This is grossly depreciating achievements of LG. Due to them large format OLED displays are now viable. Sure, there are no 100"+ class OLED displays yet and prices are high but there is industrial-scale manufacturing, good yields and volumes will increase dramatically. LG OLED is viable technology.
 

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This is grossly depreciating achievements of LG. Due to them large format OLED displays are now viable. Sure, there are no 100"+ class OLED displays yet and prices are high but there is industrial-scale manufacturing, good yields and volumes will increase dramatically. LG OLED is viable technology.
Maybe you missed the part about mass market. In 2013, they sold less than 1000 worldwide. In 2014, less than 10000 worldwide. So far for 2015 there are projected actual sales of 50-100K despite 600K capability. The problem with OLED yields is technological, not scales of volume. They are still stuck at 70%. Making more bad panels will not lower the price significantly. There only hope is to cross license production to a Chinese factory that can better absorb those yield rates with lower labor and operating costs. They need a technological break through using they current method to get beyond 70% or to move onto the printing methods with better yields, if they want a mass market product and not some high end niche product that will disappear in a few years as WHF makes them irrelevant.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Maybe you missed the part about mass market. In 2013, they sold less than 1000 worldwide. In 2014, less than 10000 worldwide. So far for 2015 there are projected actual sales of 50-100K despite 600K capability. The problem with OLED yields is technological, not scales of volume. They are still stuck at 70%. Making more bad panels will not lower the price significantly.
....and yet the prices are lowering significantly all the same..... You can get a 65" OLED now for ~$7500ish street.
 

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....and yet the prices are lowering significantly all the same..... You can get a 65" OLED now for ~$7500ish street.
Lowered from what? The handful of hand built M1 line built 2K 65" OLED that sold at the very end of 2014 for full MSRP of $9995? How they move from the real M2 line built $7500 street price will tell you how yields are progressing.
 
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