Sony Working on Bendable, Folding OLED Screens

Japanese Consumer Electronics giant Sony has published results of research it carried out with the Max Planck institute over the possibility of mass-market bending displays which could replace rigid LCDs and plasma screens.

The research paper called Annihilation Assisted Upconversion: All-Organic, Flexible and Transparent Multicolour Display presents the promising Organic LED technology under a new light.

The screens, which are less than a millimetre thick, could herald a whole new generation of devices that are yet to be invented. From Head Up Displays umbrellas which broadcast news to T-shirts displaying live TV streams, possibilities are endless.

Although the first commercial models are still far, the first trials are promising and cold potentially allow laptops and smartphones to run much longer since these OLED screens consume a fraction of the power current displays do.

Eventually, bendable, transparent OLED screens could be stacked to produce 3D images and their outstanding characteristics means that their contrast ratio and viewing angles are far, far better than existing products.

The researchers wrote in the Journal of Physics that "The displays have excellent brightness and are transparent, bendable and flexible."

Sony archrival, Dutch company Philips, has also been working on superthin bendable displays for more than four years now and a spin off, LG-Philips, launched the first flexible colour A4-size e-paper back in May 2007.

You can view the video of the bendable OLED screen here.

Below, LG-Philips' e-paper display