Display Industry Awards

2023 entries are now closed. Winners will be announced in May!

The Display Industry Awards are the display industry’s most prestigious honor, given annually since 1995 by the Society for Information Display to recognize the best display products or applications introduced to the market during the previous calendar year. There are three award categories: Display of the Year, Display Application of the Year, and Display Component of the Year. Every year winners in each category are selected by the Display Industry Awards Committee based on nominations from SID members and non-members alike. The awards are announced and presented at Display Week, the annual SID International Symposium, Seminar and Exhibition.

The 2022 winners were Apple’s Liquid Retina XDR Display in iPad Pro and MacBook Pro; Samsung Display’s foldable display with Eco2 OLED; 3M’s high-acuity reflective polarizer (HARP) lens; BOE Technology Group’s 86-inch chip-on-glass active-matrix miniLED backlight unit; Nanosys’s xQDEF diffuser plate with air-stable quantum dots; Mercedes-Benz’s Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX) Hyperscreen; and Sony PCL, Sony Co., and Sony Innovation Studios’ Crystal LED virtual production system solution.

The DIA Nomination Process

Please submit your award nomination to the category that seems most appropriate. From time to time, the awards committee may, at its discretion, move your nomination to a different category. The committee respectfully requests that submission files be kept reasonable in size and number. Be sure to include as much information as possible in the Excel nomination form (links below), and do not submit more than three separate documents. If at all possible, links to videos and high-resolution imagery are preferred to actual attachments.


NEW: Display Industry Awards FAQ. The DIA committee has created a frequently asked questions (FAQ) document for our award applicants. We strongly encourage you to read it before submitting your nomination. Thank you!

DIA nominations are limited to three product submissions per company. There is no fee to submit a nomination. Nominations for the 2023 Display Industry Awards are now open!

Eligibility: All 2023 DIA submissions must be for products introduced to the market (via press release or web site announcement) between January 1, 2022, and December 31, 2022, and must be commercially available before January 31, 2023. For the Display of the Year and Display Application of the Year Awards, the display must be integrated in an end-user product (meaning product available for purchase by actual consumers). If the product only becomes available after January 31, 2023, it shall be eligible for future award consideration in the first calendar year of product availability. For the Display Component of the Year, commercial availability requires having a sufficient quantity of samples available for integration into a display, and those samples having been shipped to at least one integrator.

Awards Categories/Nomination Forms

Display of the Year Award: This award is granted to a display product that had the most significant technological advances or outstanding features. Download here.

Display Application of the Year Award: This award is granted to a novel and outstanding product or application leveraging a display that resulted in significant impact to the market, while the display itself is not necessarily a new device. Download here.

Display Component of the Year Award: This award is granted for a novel component that significantly enhanced the performance of a display. A component is sold as a separate part destined to be incorporated into a display. A component may also include display-enhancing materials and/or parts fabricated with new processes, or display test equipment. Note: Display panels or modules should be nominated in the Display of the Year category rather than in the component category. Download here.


2022 Award Winners


Displays of the Year
Apple: Liquid Retina XDR Display in iPad Pro and MacBook Pro

The Apple Liquid Retina XDR Display on the 12.9-inch iPad Pro and 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro features extreme dynamic range with 1,000-nit full-screen-sustaining capa¬bility and 1,600-nit peak high luminance, with a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio. A DCI-P3 wide color gamut with 1 billion colors delivers rich and vibrant colors. ProMotion display technology, with variable refresh rates within 24–120 Hz, delivers a responsive viewing experience. Ultralow reflectivity helps users stay focused on the content, even in high ambient lighting conditions. Each display is carefully calibrated in the factory, and when combined with color man¬agement that’s built into iPadOS and macOS, the Liquid Retina XDR Display delivers an optimal view¬ing experience.

Award: Samsung Display: Foldable Display with Eco2 OLED

Eco2 OLED is a technology that removes the polarizer, which is used to reduce the reflection of external light and integrates its functionality into the OLED panel layer. The Eco2OLED display is eco-friendly by reducing the use of plastics. The technology improves energy efficiency and reduces power consumption.

Display Applications of the Year
Award: Mercedes-Benz: MBUX Hyperscreen

The curved large MBUX Hyperscreen is the first automotive series pillar-to-pillar unit and is the highlight in the new electric architecture Gen.2 interior program. A smart combina­tion and integration of three innovative displays behind one curved cover glass merge almost seam­lessly to create a customer experience of more than 141 centimeters appearing as one visual unit.

Award: Sony PCL, Sony Co., and Sony Innovation Studios: Crystal LED Virtual Production System Solution

Sony has developed an LED Virtual Production (VP) system that enables a novel approach to film production. It works by displaying volumetrically cap­tured images on its new direct-view “Crystal LED” B-series display as a background image, allowing for shooting of that background image with live subjects with its digital cinema camera, “VENICE.” The com­bined volumetric image then is edited and rendered through “Atom View,” a point-cloud rendering, editing, and coloring software solution from Sony Innovation Studios. Image perspective can be synchronized with camera motion, and the process, when viewed as a new production system, provides a new and efficient workflow for film and other content production.

Display Components of the Year
Award: 3M: High Acuity Reflective Polarizer Lens

The 3M HARP lens integrates a birefringent reflective polarizer used to produce compact, mid-field-of-view (FoV) eyepieces and wide-FoV optics for virtual reality (VR) head-mounted displays using folded optics in the lens configuration. Multiple configurations for folded optic lens systems may be optimized, with varying performance relative to refractive systems. Polarization control is an important consideration, and different components cause different polarizing effects. Further, there are addi­tional benefits of using folded optics in designs for mid- and wide-FoV in VR systems.

Award: BOE Technology Group: 86-Inch Chip-on-Glass Active-Matrix MiniLED Backlight Unit

compared with traditional leds, minileds have smaller particle size and higher brightness, which can bring better display effects to the lcd with a miniled back­light unit. meanwhile, it is more energy-efficient and supports accurate local dim­ming to avoid the uniformity problem that occurs with led backlight units. the active-matrix (am) driving glass substrate technology adopted by the chip-on-glass (cog) miniled backlight unit from boe is based on semiconductor technology and uses a glass substrate through boe’s lateral processing technology. glass is more suitable for making led backlight arrays with dense arrange­ment and heat concentration. the miniled unit is directly bonded to the glass substrate to realize the high-speed transfer of the led chips and can realize precise, independent dimming control of the back­light unit.


Award: Nanosys: Next-Generation Quantum-Dot Enhancement Film Diffuser Plate with Air-Stable Quantum Dots

The xQDEF Diffuser Plate brings together the color and brightness performance of QDEF quantum-dot (QD) technology with the precise light diffusion necessary for perfect contrast levels in miniLED and full-array local-dimming LCDs. As a direct replacement for diffuser plate components in direct-lit LCDs, the xQDEF Diffuser Plate simplifies the display assembly process, allowing display makers to design and build the most cost-effective displays with the widest color gamut. Compared with other wide color gamut solutions, the xQDEF Diffuser Plate implementation results in close to no additional material costs. By the end of 2021, more than a million TVs with xQDEF Diffuser Plates inside shipped into the market.

Displays of the Year

LG Display: 65-Inch Rollable TV
TCL: Q8 Series MiniLED TV

Display Applications of the Year

Facebook: Oculus Quest 2
Lenovo Group: Thinkpad X1 Fold

Display Components Of the Year

Schott: Xensation Flex Ultra-Thin Cover Glass
SigmaSense: SigmaDrive SDC100 Touch Controller

2020 Award Winners

2020 Display Industry Awards Winner Slide Show

Displays of the Year

Award: Pro Display XDR from Apple

With its 32‐inch LCD panel, 6K Retina resolution, and over 20 million pixels, Apple Pro Display XDR (Fig . 1) sets a new bar for the capabilities of a professional display. Designed for pro users who rely on color accuracy and true‐to‐life image reproduction, such as photographers, video editors, 3D animators, and colorists, Pro Display XDR delivers the most comprehensive set of features ever offered on a display in its price range.

Featuring P3 wide color and 10‐bit color depth, Pro Display XDR is expertly calibrated at the factory to ensure billions of colors can be reproduced with exceptional accuracy. And features such as built‐in reference modes make it easy to match the viewing requirements of content creation workflows. With 1000 nits of full‐screen sustained brightness and 1600 nits peak, a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio, and an Apple‐designed backlight system for optimized light shaping, Pro Display XDR sets a new industry standard for reference‐quality imaging at a fraction of the size, weight, and cost of traditional reference monitors.

Here's how Pro Display XDR is engineered to produce industry‐leading imagery: Traditional LCD displays use edge‐lit backlight technology to diffuse light evenly across the display at the same brightness level. Instead, Pro Display XDR uses a locally dimmed backlight with 576 individual LEDs, controlled by an advanced algorithm in the timing controller chip. As a result, the display can exhibit incredibly bright, color‐accurate image areas and deep blacks simultaneously, delivering its 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio and up to 1600 nits peak brightness. An advanced thermal management system supports the display to maintain peak brightness indefinitely in environments up to 25° C. With these features, Pro Display XDR introduces Extreme Dynamic Range (XDR), far outperforming typical HDR brightness specifications for desktop displays and enabling pros to work with true‐to‐life content.

Pro Display XDR also incorporates several innovations to optimize image quality compared to traditional LCD displays. First, to minimize “blooming,” a halo effect surrounding bright objects on dark backgrounds, an Apple‐designed cavity reflector is layered on top of the LEDs and optimized geometrically. Along with several additional custom lenses and reflective layers, it directs the light upward while reducing halo effects and preserving light uniformity.

Second, Pro Display XDR has an industry‐leading polarizer technology that preserves image fidelity at a super‐wide viewing angle, allowing each team member in a studio or on set to see the same color and contrast, regardless of viewing angle. And finally, for pros working in uncontrolled lighting environments, Pro Display XDR introduces an innovative matte option called nano‐texture. While a typical matte engineering process adds a coating to the surface to scatter light but also inadvertently reduces contrast, nano‐texture is etched into the glass itself at the nanometer level, producing less glare and low reflectivity while maintaining contrast.

With its incredible color and advanced calibration, Extreme Dynamic Range with industry‐leading brightness and contrast, and innovative display technologies, Pro Display XDR provides image quality and performance previously reserved for high‐end reference monitors.


The display industry has experimented with various technologies to better reflect natural images and a wide range of colors on screens, and with the emergence of LED local dimming and HDR, display performance has substantially improved. However, traditional LCD screens’ brightness has long been considered relatively high in low grayscale. In other words, it isn't black enough, and it's difficult to use local image technology to differentiate the sense of depth with a high‐contrast ratio.

As a breakthrough in thin‐film transistor (TFT)‐LCD technology, BOE's dual‐cell panel (Fig . 2) — referred to as “BD Cell” for short—offers several important technical advancements that conventional LCD screens don't. The display uses pixel‐level ultra‐fine backlight control technology and a brand‐new integrated circuit (IC) driving technology to make the million‐level contrast ratio rate and 12 bits’ color depth come true, accurately displaying more natural and true‐to‐life colors.

The contrast ratio of a conventional LCD screen is 3,000:1 with 0.2 nits as the lowest brightness. The BD Cell's screen is capable of raising the contrast ratio up to 150,000:1 and decreasing brightness to 0.003 nit. In terms of combining LED local dimming with BD Cell technology, the contrast ratio can be as high as 2,000,000:1. Moreover, while a conventional LCD screen's color depth is 8 bit, BD Cell is capable of boosting the color depth as high as 12 bit with an enhanced IC driving algorithm. On the other hand, BD Cell incorporates advantages of an LCD screen's stableness and technological maturity, with no image sticking.

Equipped with an advanced dimension switch screen, BD Cell combines a main cell and subcell, which plays a key role in dividing the backlight into a million zones with the function of a liquid crystal light valve. According to the company, the process of combining the subcell and main cell was not without its challenges: BOE's engineers had to troubleshoot problems such as Newton rings caused by packing, the Moire phenomenon, and image dislocation caused by pixel‐level alignment deviation along the way.

In the end, “the successful development of BD Cell substantially increases the lifespan and the competitiveness of LCD technology, bringing a better visual experience to consumers and more possibilities for the entire display industrial chain,” says Feng Yuan, vice president of BOE Technology Group.

Award: Foldable Display from Samsung Display

With the global launch of its Galaxy Fold phone (Fig . 3) last year, Samsung accomplished a few different things. For starters, it set the standard for the nascent foldable display category and demonstrated the product's potential as a next‐generation device. And, considering how long the industry has floated the concept of foldables, treating it, for decades, as a symbol of the future, it also marked a generational milestone. (The company first showed flexible prototype displays at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show, which shows how hard it has worked to achieve a true foldable.)

Samsung's first‐of‐its‐kind device bridges a smartphone and tablet with the help of two AMOLED displays: a 4.6‐inch external screen and an internal screen that expands to 7.3 inches when unfolded. That interior display's size gives way to a powerful multitasking feature by operating three applications simultaneously. It also has a picture quality of up to Quad Extended Graphics Array (QXGA+) resolution and a pure color gamut and peak luminance of up to 600 cd/m2, letting users fully immerse themselves in various types of content such as gaming and video streaming. Indeed, according to the company, wide screen but compact size is no longer something users expect to see only in a sci‐fi film.

To achieve those specifications, Samsung has developed highly effective electroluminescent material and highly durable components. To make an inward foldable display with a bending radius of 1.5 millimeters (mm), all the layers within the panel should be folded without causing any cracks. As a result, the foldable display employs a cover window made of flexible, hardened plastic. Samsung says that it successfully reduced the thickness by more than 50 percent by taking advantage of materials that enable ultra‐thin layers. Furthermore, the stress of various layers (including the TFT, light‐emitting layers, polarizing plate, and cover window) is appropriately dispersed, allowing the product to pass a strict bending test more than 200,000 cycles.

Though volumes for the foldable market are expected to be small for several years, Samsung considers its foldable display as a stepping stone in revolutionizing display form factors. Going forward, Samsung says the form‐factor revolution will be highly significant for enhancing mobile devices.

Display Components of the Year

Award: AutoGrade™ Glass by ColdForm™ Technology from Corning

After years of using handheld devices, consumers have come to develop certain expectations of displays. They expect them to be durable with a smooth‐touch feel, yet sensitive for accurate finger swiping, touching, and tapping. Manufacturers have used glass to deliver on those expectations, but with the proliferation of displays in automotive interior dashboards, new challenges arise. Namely, how can glass be used to ensure a satisfying experience for consumers while also addressing ambient light conditions and adhering to auto industry reliability and safety regulations?

To be sure, although requirements for each country's automotive testing body slightly differ, interior dashboard designs must pass similar requirements around the globe as part of headform impact tests (HIT). HIT simulates a driver's or passenger's head hitting the dashboard after being propelled forward during a car accident. Because success is measured by the type of breakage in the dashboard, material choices and display cover choices are crucial. With those challenges in mind, Corning introduced its auto interior glass solutions AutoGrade™ Corning Gorilla Glass (Fig . 4) in January 2019.

According to Corning, AutoGrade™ Gorilla Glass can help enable a variety of in‐vehicle display designs while eliminating the need for plastic antisplinter films. Moreover, it's designed to help display modules pass industry reliability tests. And with automotive designers extending displays across dashboards in new sizes and curved configurations, Corning is able to transfer the benefits from AutoGrade glass to curved display areas using its proprietary Corning ColdForm™ Technology.

Shaped or curved pieces of glass traditionally are contoured through “hot forming,” a process in which the glass is first molded in a bending furnace or pressed into shape while in liquid form. From that point on, the rest of the manufacturing process must be completed on a shaped piece: The ion‐exchange tank for chemical strengthening will need to accommodate shaped parts and, further down the line, coating and ink applications as well as final packaging and shipping must be calculated to uniformly coat the curves.

In contrast, Corning's ColdForm Technology enables the glass to be bent at room temperature as a final step. This means the glass travels through the manufacturing process—chemical strengthening, coating application, and printing—in a flat state before being curved at the end. Completing these process steps on a flat piece of glass cuts down on processing time and costs, as machines can accommodate more parts and coatings are applied more uniformly.

As displays move beyond simple infotainment purposes and become tools vital for assessing critical driving information, the need for high‐tech glass is clear, says Corning. AutoGrade™ Gorilla Glass can help enable automotive displays that are larger, longer, and shaped to bring next‐generation capabilities on the road and, ultimately, help the industry differentiate with curved console designs.

Award: TanvasTouch Surface Haptics from Tanvas

As automotive displays increase in size and sophistication, physical knobs and dials are being replaced by streamlined surfaces inside the cabin. Enter haptic technology specialists such as Tanvas. A Chicago‐based company founded in 2011 by two Northwestern University professors, Tanvas has been developing the next generation of multitouch and haptic technology. TanvasTouch surface haptics are programmable textures and tactile effects that can be felt with the swipe of a finger across a physically smooth touchscreen, trackpad, or any touch‐enabled surface (Fig . 5).

TanvasTouch uses an electric field to modulate friction where the finger moves across a surface. (It can be deployed on surfaces of any shape, with suitable substrates including glass, plastic, metal, ceramics, and natural surfaces.) Those changes in friction are perceived as fine textures, edges, and bumps that can be felt without looking. The company also offers TanvasTouch for Automotive, the first automotive solution to produce programmable textures and effects with a solid‐state actuator. Traditional vibration‐based haptics are unsuitable for large or curved automotive displays because they require the display to move. TanvasTouch is a solid‐state haptic solution that eliminates the need for costly dampening structures to be built into the display assembly while helping drivers keep their eyes on the road through the use of search haptics that allow the driver to find and adjust controls without looking.

Nonvibrating surface haptic technology introduces new options for automotive manufacturers to reimagine the vehicle's interior design and feel. Car manufacturers can create a uniform or harmonious touch experience across multiple surfaces—not just the display screen, but also the steering wheel, exterior door handle, and even upholstery. According to Tanvas, automotive manufacturers can implement its technology with a combination of a proprietary controller solution (which performs multitouch sensing and haptic control), supplied in various forms (including as an IC or as a module), and transform the multitouch sensor panel to a combined multitouch and haptic actuator for any surface.

Award: Spectrum Conversion by Organic Phosphor Sheet (SCO) from Toray Industries

Although quantum dot (QD) technology realizes a high color gamut for LCD, most QD materials are cadmium (Cd)‐based, raising concerns about their potential toxicity: Exposure to cadmium has been connected to cancer and other serious health issues, as well as environmental harms. As a result, Cd‐based QD materials are not widely accepted in the display market, and the industry has shifted its focus to finding nontoxic alternatives. Still, Cd‐free QD materials can bring their own challenges, including issues with low luminance and color purity.

Because one of Toray's core offerings is organic emitting materials with high color purity for organic EL devices, the company wondered if they might be useful for a high color gamut LCD and began developing the SCO sheet (Fig . 6). In the beginning, the biggest issue with the organic emitting materials was their lifetime. However, Toray ultimately achieved a lifetime 1,400 times longer compared to the initial development stage.

According to the company, their SCO sheet is especially innovative for a few reasons. First, the high color purity of Toray's organic emitting material is based on a full width at half maximum (FWHM) parameter that's much narrower than any other organic emitting materials so far developed. So by using the SCO sheet, a high color gamut LCD can be realized. In particular, the sheet can cover both Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI)‐P3 and Adobe specifications.

Second, Toray says its original organic emitting material has a higher quantum efficiency than that of non‐Cd QDs. Therefore, an approximately 10 percent higher luminance can be realized with the sheet than with non‐Cd QDs. For that reason, the SCO sheet can contribute to lower power consumption of the LCD panel.

Because Toray's SCO sheet is free of toxic elements, it's not restricted by various environmental regulations, including the European Unions’ Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) Directive. Finally, with the sheet, more than 99 percent of DCI and more than 99 percent of Adobe coverage can be achieved in one LCD panel. (According to the company, non‐Cd QDs can't say the same.) Recently, in the PC monitor market, there has been a strong demand for compatibility of DCI and Adobe in one PC monitor. Toray believes that with the SCO sheet, it will be able to develop a new PC monitor market.

Although OLED is a well‐known way to apply organic electronics materials to the display industry, this is the first instance of applying organic emitting materials to the LCD industry, an achievement that expands the possibilities of organic electronics materials.

Display Application of the Year

Award: 7‐inch OLED Virtual Mirror System from Audi AG

Last year, Audi's plans to shift to the production of fully electric cars came into clearer focus: Not only were models of the Audi e‐tron, the company's first high‐volume all‐electric car, delivered to consumers, but Audi said that it intends to debut more than 30 electrified cars—20 of them fully electric—by 2025.

With this pivot from gas‐powered cars, the need for a virtual side mirror (Fig . 7)—consisting of small exterior side cameras and a door‐mounted interior display—became even more pronounced, according to Bernhard Senner, an engineer in Development Innovations User Experience/User Interface at Audi. The company debuted the mirror as an option in the all‐electric Audi e‐tron, and it's currently available in Europe. (Because of regulations, the e‐tron is only available in the US without the virtual side mirrors.)

What's the common thread between virtual mirrors and Audi's electric ambitions? With its aerodynamic design, the virtual side mirror reduces wind noise. That's a plus for electric cars, which are already noticeably quieter than combustion cars because they don't have engines. What's more, the mirror reduces drag, giving the vehicle a few miles more range.

Beyond that, Senner says, they also offer practical benefits in terms of comfort and safety. With their sophisticated image processing, the displays provide a much better image than a conventional mirror can in certain situations, such as driving in direct sunlight. The mirrors also adjust automatically to three driving situations: highway, turning, and parking. On the highway, the field of vision is reduced so that the driver can better estimate speeds when driving fast, and Senner says if the driver signals an intention to turn or change lanes by indicating, the indicator view extends the relevant side's image detail to reduce the blind spot. The field of vision is extended downward when maneuvering and parking, and the display visualizes the turn signal as a green contour on its outer frame and displays notifications from the Audi side‐assist lane‐change assistant and exit warning.

A 7‐inch OLED was selected for the virtual exterior mirror. In early test drives, Senner notes, Audi realized that the limited contrast of an LCD and especially the slow response time in low temperatures was a significant issue. “So it became clear very early, that we have to use an OLED display for this application, because with the dark black and the temperature, independent fast switching‐time OLED is the best solution,” he says.

The camera is integrated into the hexagonal end of the virtual mirror's flat supports and its images are digitally processed and displayed on high‐contrast, 1,280 × 800‐pixel OLED displays in the transition between the instrument panel and door.

“The feedback we got from our customers was very positive,” Senner says. “Everybody who ordered this option would buy it again. So the story with virtual side mirrors with OLED displays will be continued.”

2019 Award Winners

Displays of the Year

Award: Apple’s LTPO OLED Display for Apple Watch Series 4 Display

While retaining the original signature design, the fourth‐generation Apple Watch has been refined, combining new hardware and software enhancements into a singular, unified form. The display, which is more than 30 percent bigger at 40 or 44 mm (depending on the model), seamlessly integrates into a thinner, smaller case, while the new interface provides more information with richer detail.

The challenge for designers was to make the display larger without noticeably increasing the case size or compromising the battery life. They achieved that with the help of LTPO display technology, improving power efficiency and helping users get through the day on a single charge. LTPO is a new paradigm in low‐power OLED display design and integration, combining the narrow‐border capabilities of a low‐temperature polycrystalline silicon thin‐film transistor (LTPS‐TFT) backplane with low‐leakage indium‐gallium‐zinc‐oxide (IGZO) TFTs in the same panel. The display can continuously refresh anywhere from 1 to 60 hertz (Hz) without any detectable front‐of‐screen artifacts, resulting in a seamless user experience. Using a custom display‐driver integrated circuit and power management integrated circuit with optimized power architecture, the Series 4 display represents a new stage of display development in both technology and design.

Award: Samsung Electronics’ Modular MicroLED Display (The Wall)

The Wall is made up of millions of individual pixels of self‐emitting inorganic red, green, and blue (RGB) microscopic LED chips to produce brilliant color onscreen. In addition, Samsung’s unique Black Seal technology (applied to each microLED) creates a seamless, uniform canvas with deeper blacks. However, microLED‐based technology is just the start: the quantum processor’s modular and artificial intelligence (AI) upscaling help The Wall achieve pristine picture quality of up to 8K resolution, as well as stunning high‐dynamic range (HDR) 10+, and a peak luminance of up to 2,000 nits. All told, these features make The Wall—the latest iteration in Samsung’s long line of industry‐leading display technology developments—among the most vivid and immersive displays available.

As the newest display technology to be commercialized in more than a decade, microLED offers significant improvements over traditional displays and even the newest displays on the market. MicroLED technology doesn’t require a backlight to illuminate the display’s millions of subpixels and, although it’s composed of self‐emitting pixels that turn on and off individually, its inorganic materials won’t degrade or cause screen burn‐in over time. The Wall offers greater longevity than previous display technologies, with a lifespan of 100,000 hours.

Moreover, it’s configurable and customizable to a variety of sizes and ratios, from 73‐inch (2K) to 292‐inch (8K), and its bezel‐less “infinity” design allows the display to blend subtly into its surroundings. The modularity feature gives users the creative freedom to make optimal use of their spaces and create an ideal display configuration in a variety of environments.

Award: Sony Corp.’s Crystal LED Display System

The Crystal LED Display System from Sony consists of a display controller and modular display units made from ultrafine microLEDs. This technology creates large‐scale video walls with lifelike realism that can work in a variety of environments. Its applications range from industrial product design and manufacturing to theme parks and museums, corporate meeting rooms and lobbies, retail showrooms, lecture theaters, and broadcast studios. In the display units, RGB microLEDs are closely placed in an area of less than 0.003 mm2; the extreme smallness of the LEDs allows 99 percent of the panel’s surface area to be completely black.

Exceeding the limits of conventional LED technology, this enables an extraordinarily high contrast ratio of over 1,000,000:1. In addition to high contrast, this display supports HDR, with 10‐bit color depth and enormous color gamut. Sony’s unique microLED technology with isotropic luminescence and higher efficiency achieves a viewing angle of virtually 180 degrees and an impressive luminance of 1,000 nits, which provides immersive viewing in both light and dark environments for every audience member.

Sony also developed an active‐matrix pixeldrive circuitry with micro ICs, which achieves an ultra‐fast video response time with a 120Hz refresh rate—ideal for sports, concerts, or training simulations requiring large‐screen visuals with no delay or blur. The bezel‐free design ensures no visible seam between multiple display units and makes it possible to create impressive large‐scale displays of virtually any dimension and aspect ratio. This scalable display product has a pixel pitch of 1.26 mm, which helps it achieve flexible formats such as 110‐inch full high definition (FHD), 220‐inch 4K × 2K, and even 381 × 107 inches (8K × 2K). By combining this scalability and outstanding high picture quality, the Crystal LED Display System embodies a brand‐new world of large‐screen entertainment.

Display Components of the Year

Award: Dexerials Corp.’s AR Films for Piano Black Design

Dexerials’ new AR film, AR100–T0810, represents a significant step in a display field in which consumers prefer piano‐black vehicle interiors. (Piano black is a smooth, lustrous finish noted for its resemblance to the finish on a grand piano.) The development of this ground‐breaking product was motivated by requests from several North American original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). As vehicle display development advances in both functionality and size, seamless integration with the surrounding infotainment system has become extremely important.

The new film is glossy in appearance while maintaining a reflectivity of around 0.3 percent. Its structure has an anti‐smudge top coating, dry‐sputtered layers of high and low refractive‐index coatings, and a clear hard coat on triacetylcellulose (TAC) substrate. Dexerials manufactures the film in a roll‐to‐roll process under cleanroom conditions to achieve high quality. The film also has a neutral color shift, which makes it compatible in appearance with a glossy piano‐black interior, and black‐mask printing in terms of color hue (CIE L∗a∗b∗), luminous reflectivity, and general visual appearance.

In terms of development, when AR100–T0810 was initially paired with a standard optically clear adhesive (OCA) (T∼99 percent), color‐hue matching with black‐mask printing was excellent. Further improvement of ΔE∗ab was achieved by adding black‐colored OCA (T∼75 percent) to AR film structure. Reflectance hue remained neutral as a function of the viewing angle, at least up to 40°. Since a vehicle’s center information display is not viewed at a direct angle, minimizing the angular dependency is extremely important for automotive display applications. For piano‐black interior styling, the display must have a glossy appearance while achieving a dead‐front aesthetic when the display is powered off. To achieve dead‐front appearance, Dexerials matches the color of the display active area with the black‐mask printing. Then, the new AR100‐T0810 (no‐AG) anti‐reflection film achieves low reflectivity while minimizing color shift, even at high viewing angles. The unique combination of AR100‐T0810 with added black‐colored OCA improves color matching between a powered‐off display and its black‐mask printing. Removing anti‐glare screen treatments helps ensure glossy screens.

Another development target was curved cover‐lens compatibility. While curved cover lenses make their way into automotive displays, the materials for displays still need to meet automotive requirements. Dexerials’ AR film passed typical automotive reliability tests after being laminated onto various curved structures for both concave and convex shapes. A variety of display curvatures were tested, from R300 (mm) all the way down to R10 (mm) curvature. Environmental tests included a 95° C oven for 500 hours, 70° C with 93 percent humidity for 500 hours, and thermal shock from −40° C (30 minutes) to 85° C (30 minutes) for 300 cycles.

Dexerials’ AR films help flat‐panel and curved displays maintain a glossy appearance, achieve a dead‐front aesthetic at various viewing angles, and ensure that reflections don’t disturb the driver. These products are enhancing design possibilities for automotive manufacturers, as well as human‐machine interaction (HMI) possibilities for drivers.

Award: SCHOTT’s RealView High‐Refractive Index Glass Wafers

SCHOTT’s RealView is a class of high‐index glass wafers designed to propel the development of augmented‐reality (AR) and mixed‐reality (MR) smartglasses with superior image quality, enabling an FOV that more closely resembles human peripheral vision. AR/MR smartglasses are expected to create the next great computing revolution. By merging digital information with the real world, AR/MR will unlock new applications for workplace training, productivity, entertainment, and more.

Several of the world’s leading technology companies are working on the challenging and complex optical systems necessary to produce these kinds of smartglasses for consumers. Most of them have settled on the use of waveguides as the best avenue to create mass‐market products with the highest visual quality and the greatest potential for miniaturization. But their attempts have run into one uniform stumbling block: The FOV is limited by the maximum refractive index of the glass used for the waveguide. For those companies interested in creating truly immersive experiences, this is a serious drawback.

SCHOTT RealView high‐index glass wafers, however, double the total internal reflection angle compared to conventional glass wafers, enabling a larger FOV. Designers using RealView glass and its portfolio of refractive indices can achieve up to twice the FOV as designer using conventional glass.

SCHOTT leveraged more than 130 years’ experience in glassmaking to develop these extremely thin, lightweight wafers, to ensure that users of smartglasses find them comfortable. At the same time, SCHOTT’s RealView features an exceptionally low variation in total thickness, a property that produces extremely sharp, high‐contrast imaging. In this important property, SCHOTT achieved up to a factor of 10 tighter specifications compared to normal glass wafers used for semiconductor and optoelectronic applications.

RealView high‐index glass wafers were developed by SCHOTT in consultation with experts in the burgeoning AR/MR industry, who expressed their belief that the wide FOV will be a key enabler of broader AR/MR adoption. Researchers at SCHOTT have leveraged their expertise in glass science—including melting, hot forming, and surface processing optical materials—to create a product that features superior optical properties but also can be produced efficiently in mass‐market quantities. Interest in SCHOTT’s wafer technology for smartglasses is high, and the company has recently invested in a global manufacturing set‐up for mass‐producing RealView products.

Display Applications of the Year

Award: Lenovo’s Yoga Book C930 with Dual Display

The Yoga Book C930 is the world’s first dual display laptop with E Ink, combining a quad high‐definition (QHD) LCD with a multifunctional E Ink display that transforms from a laptop to a tablet with just one click. Users can type on the display’s keyboard to send email, sketch with a digital pen, and read an ebook on the same screen, with an extra screen to spare.

First among the E Ink display’s multiple functions is the 10.8‐inch on‐screen touch keyboard. Featuring haptic feedback and an easily customizable layout, it offers a 22 percent increase in typing productivity from the previous‐generation Yoga Book. Because it’s powered by AI, the more it is used, the more accurate the laptop becomes.

The E Ink display easily transforms into a notepad—users can sketch, write, develop formulas, and more with the optional Lenovo Precision Pen, which features 4,096 levels of sensitivity. After completing a project, it can be digitized with a few clicks and added to the main display. E Ink Note works seamlessly with Windows 10.

As an e‐reader, the Yoga Book allows access to multiple e‐book formats, including EPUB, MOBI, and TXT. The 10.8‐inch FHD E Ink display is covered with durable Gorilla Glass and coated with an antiglare finish for an easy‐on‐the‐eyes, paper‐like feel.

The Yoga Book C930 is the world’s thinnest and lightest dual‐display laptop. At just 9.9‐mm thick and featuring a fanless aluminum design, it is scratch‐ and shock‐resistant. Featuring a patented 360‐degree watchband hinge, it’s easy to quickly transform it from a laptop to tablet or stand mode. And there is a shortcut for easy access: knock twice on the Yoga Book C930’s lid and it will open. The ultraportable form factor is combined with optional 24/7 LTE connectivity for Internet access.

Award: Japan Display Inc.’s Curved LCDs for Automotive Dashboards

In 2016, JDI began designing 12.3‐ and 15.0‐inch TFT LCDs for automotive cockpit use in collaboration with Volkswagen, Germany, culminating in the Touareg SUV market introduction in May 2018. Both displays represent the world’s first curved TFT LCDs in production for automotive dashboards. The curved, 3D‐shaped displays, used in combination, enable a stylish interior dashboard, allowing automotive OEMs more flexibility in design. The 15.0‐inch LTPS‐TFT LCD has a concave R3,000‐mm‐radius curved design, with 1,920 Image 1,020 resolution, an LED backlight with 900 candelas per square meter (cd/m2 minimum) luminance, and in‐cell touch functionality. The 12.3‐inch LTPS‐TFT LCD has a concave R1,500‐mm‐radius curved design, with 1,920 Image 720 resolution, and an LED backlight with 780 cd/m2 (minimum) luminance.

Curved displays for automotive applications present a greater challenge to mass produce than curved displays for consumer applications, because of the difficult specifications of wide temperature range, shock and vibration, and long‐life reliability for automotive applications. JDI overcame these challenges by developing a new, optimized lamination process for curved displays to achieve the required automotivegrade quality and reliability. It incorporates a novel concept of combining a slimmed LCD panel and hot‐formed cover glass and, by optimizing the slimming process, realizes these displays without black mura (pixel defects)—a difficult feat to achieve with curved displays.

Furthermore, the 15.0‐inch TFT LCD is the world’s first curved display in mass production with in‐cell touch functionality. JDI’s in‐cell touch function realizes superior low‐reflection visibility compared to external touch panels by incorporating a newly developed touch‐electrode material and a new LCD driver that implements hybrid in‐cell touch functionality. A display with in‐cell touch functionality provides increased value for automotive applications. As compared to conventional external touch‐panel solutions, the display with in‐cell touch and low‐reflection visibility is usable anywhere in the cockpit, including nontraditional locations.

Over the past few years, displays for automotive applications have changed from strictly human‐machine interface (HMI) information devices to integral components of the automobile interior‐design concept. As the automotive world evolves, interior designs are increasingly important factors in consumers’ vehicle choice.

In conclusion, curved displays, together with touch capability and functionality, support these trends and enable new designs and styling. The displays provide new flexibility and value for aesthetically pleasing designs, and the in‐cell touch functionality allows for freedom of display location within the cockpit. Together, these displays have helped usher in a breakthrough in automotive cockpit design that is expected to become more popular in the automotive market in the years to follow.

2018 Award Winners

Displays of the Year

Award: Apple’s iPad Pro Display

The latest iPad Pro displays come in 10.5-in. and 12.9-in. sizes, each featuring the same 264-ppi pixel density, corresponding to 3.7 million and 5.6 million pixels, respectively. These iPad Pros also offer unparalleled visual performance enabled by Apple’s innovative ProMotion technology. This is the first time that a mainstream consumer-product display has delivered adaptive screen-refresh rates ranging from 24 Hz to 120 Hz. The 120-Hz refresh rate provides an unprecedented visual experience, with fluid scrolling, excellent touch response (for both finger and Apple pencil input), and smooth motion content. The lower refresh rate can be enabled depending on real-time on-screen content requirements, reducing overall panel power without image-quality compromise. To achieve the ProMotion display technology, a new high-performance oxide TFT with high mobility and low leakage current was developed, as well as newly engineered liquid-crystal materials with low flexoelectricity, and advanced photoalignment materials and processes.

In addition, a highly customized display timing controller (TCON) was developed from scratch for this generation of iPad Pro displays. The controller is designed to work seamlessly with the system on chip (SOC) – the Apple A10X fusion chip – which works with iOS, to deliver the stunning retina ProMotion display. By demonstrating the advantages of the unique property of oxide TFT, iPad Pro displays will help accelerate the display industry’s transition to 120-Hz technology.

Award: Sharp Corp.’s 70-in. 8K LCD TV

On August 31, 2017, Sharp announced the release of the AQUOS 8K series of 8K-compatible TVs and displays, a world first. 8K is a revolutionary technology for ultra-high-definition images, with 16 times the resolution of full high definition, which cannot be expressed with 4K images. 8K reproduces images at ultimate reality, with ultra-fine details smaller than the eye can see. Apart from being used to display TV broadcasts and other media content, 8K will dramatically impact many aspects of our lives: medical care, business, security, signage, etc.

Sharp’s 70-in. 8K-resolution LCD TV has the following features: • Resolution: 7,680 × 4,320 pixels

Luminance: Full white 400 cd/m2

Peak white: 1,000 cd/m2

Contrast: 4,000:1 (dynamic contrast using local dimming is 1,000,000:1)

Color gamut: BT. 2020 coverage ratio 86 percent (CIE 1976 uʹvʹ color space)

Maximum power consumption: 470 (W) for Japanese 8K TV model

8K signal input with HDMI 4 cables and 8K static imagery via USB flash memory

Sharp has been leading the industry by releasing 8K-related products in Japan. In October 2015, the company released an 85-in. 8K professional monitor using an 8K LCD panel with an indium-gallium zinc-oxide (IGZO) backplane and followed up in June 2017 with the release of a 70-in. 8K professional monitor. Sharp is eager to bring worldwide consumers the thrill of this revolutionary technology, and to this end has released the world’s first 8K TVs in Japan and China, and the world’s first 8K displays in Taiwan and Europe. Sharp is also complementing its 8K TVs by accelerating development of 8K broadcast receivers, 8K cameras, and other 8K products to help establish a global 8K ecosystem.

Display Components of the Year

Award: Continental Automotive GmbH’s 3D Touch Surface

Continental’s 3D Touch Surface display, the world’s first touchscreen with a 3D surface on top of a display, engages multiple senses to create a holistic and intuitive interaction.

Growing demand among users for new features and integration of digital content has resulted in bigger and bigger in-vehicle touchscreens. However, large-size touch displays tend to increase driver distraction. The 3D Touch Surface Display strongly supports the intuitive locating of control elements on large touchscreens while at the same time providing a reliable confirmation of a successful operation.

Control elements on the display surface, including buttons, sliders, and flat regions, can be easily identified just by feeling the edges of the topographic hills and valleys. The completion of an interactive task is confirmed with active haptic feedback, which provides the user with a safety-enhancing mechanical confirmation that the chosen screen element has been activated. The impulse is provided in the form of a short and highly precise mechanical momentum that is transferred to the display surface after having exceeded a certain force threshold; any mechanized movement of the display is completely invisible to the naked eye. With active haptic feedback coming from screen-element edges, users can also distinguish among virtual buttons or even flat areas without having to look at the screen. The actuators can be finely controlled based on force and acceleration, which makes different haptic characteristics possible.

In terms of design individualization, the 3D elements allow brand-specific differentiation. The implemented technology enables the distribution of 3D soft keys or soft sliders in a flexible way on the display surface to match the design and user interaction philosophy of the car brand.

From a user experience point of view, this display solution not only allows for exciting design, but ensures that drivers can operate the various functions without having to take their eyes off the road. As human machine interfaces become ever more complex, the combination of active-haptic feedback and passive feedback from the 3D surface ensures an outstanding user experience and significantly improves operational safety.

Award: Kolon Industries’ Colorless Polyimide

Emerging concepts for the next generation of consumer devices demand more flexible displays to enable a variety of form factors. The promise of these displays is that they can be folded or even rolled and will offer the strength and transparency needed to replace the glass-based displays used in many of today’s devices.

Kolon Industries has helped fulfill this promise with its Colorless Polyimide (CPI) – a powerful and optimized solution backed by more than 12 years of research and development. Built with a patented, high-heat-resistant, optically and mechanically superior material, Kolon’s technology offers the potential to revolutionize flexible displays, organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs), consumer devices, and other transparent flexible electronics.

Kolon’s revolutionary material – available both in film form and as a varnish for coatable materials – has the technical performance to truly transform the industry. It offers optical transparency of 90 percent, over 6 GPa modulus, 2H surface hardness, superior folding properties, and roll-to-roll processing capabilities. It also has a smooth surface finish that is tunable with various functional treatments.

All of these features make Kolon CPI ideal for the next generation of portable, flexible devices, as well as industrial applications and emerging markets. Now boasting the world’s first mass-production facility optimized for the manufacture of CPI, Kolon is primed to extend its innovation to a broad market that also includes organic photovoltaics (OPVs), flexible printed circuit boards (FPCBs), and specialized applications that may benefit from flexible display technology.

Award: Synaptics’ Optical In-Display Fingerprint Sensor

Synaptics, Inc., a leading developer of human interface solutions, recently announced mass production and retail availability of its new Clear ID FS9500 family of optical in-display fingerprint sensors. Smartphone maker Vivo is now using this technology in two shipping smartphones, the X20 Plus UD, and the X21 UD.

Designed to enable smartphones with bezel-free OLED infinity displays, Synaptics’ Clear ID in-display fingerprint sensors are placed in a natural location directly in the touchscreen, eliminating the need for buttons and bezels. A fingerprint icon in the display guides the user and disappears upon authentication. In combination with Synaptics’ SentryPoint technology, Clear ID is highly secure and faster than alternative biometrics such as 3D facial recognition. It is also very convenient, with one-touch/one-step biometric authentication directly in the touchscreen display area of smartphones.

Synaptics’ Clear ID optical fingerprint sensor is laminated below the OLED display and works with both flexible and rigid OLEDs. The OLED display illuminates the finger. Clear ID captures the reflected fingerprint between the OLED pixels via its complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) sensor, and advanced signal-processing technology provides for fast and accurate matching. Clear ID leverages standard optical production materials and processes. It supports up to 1.7-mm thickness and the addition of screen protectors. It also works in sunlight and bright conditions.

The Clear ID FS9500 optical solution excels with wet, dry, and cold fingers, and since it’s protected by glass, is durable, scratchproof, and waterproof. In-display fingerprint technology allows users to conveniently and securely unlock the device at any angle, whether it’s sitting on a table or in a car mount.

Synaptics’ optical fingerprint sensors and SentryPoint technology provide a wide range of unique and highly secure authentication features, including adaptive fingerprint template matching and authentication; anti-spoof technology; and support for transport layer security protocol (TPS) with elliptic curve cryptography (ECC) authentication and AES (advanced encryption standard) encryption.

Display Applications of the Year

Award: Apple’s iPhone X

Since the birth of the original iPhone, Apple’s vision has been of a product that is entirely screen, without decorative elements, physical keyboards, or dedicated function buttons. However, until now there has always been one button on the face of an iPhone. With iPhone X, that button has been eliminated and the display has become the primary element for all interactions, allowing the display to flow to fill the face of the iPhone.

Since the birth of the original iPhone, Apple’s vision has been of a product that is entirely screen, without decorative elements, physical keyboards, or dedicated function buttons. However, until now there has always been one button on the face of an iPhone. With iPhone X, that button has been eliminated and the display has become the primary element for all interactions, allowing the display to flow to fill the face of the iPhone.

The beautiful 458-ppi 5.8-in. Super Retina display is the first OLED panel that rises to the standards of iPhone, with stunning colors, true blacks, a million-to-one contrast ratio, and wide color support with the best system-wide color management in a smartphone. The HDR display supports Dolby Vision and HDR10, which together make photo and video content look even more amazing. The addition of True Tone dynamically adjusts the white balance of the display to match the surrounding light for a more natural, paper-like viewing experience. The iPhone has revolutionized the last decade of phones; iPhone X will set the stage for the next decade, with the display in the starring role

Award: LG Display’s UHD Crystal Sound OLED

Crystal Sound OLED (CSO) is one of the latest in a line of OLED advancements made by LG Display. The company launched a ground-breaking 55-in. FHD OLED TV in 2013 and completed a full line-up of 55-/65-/75-in UHD OLED TVs in 2015. Since then, UHD and 8K pixels have been incorporated for high image quality. And the company has continued to develop and apply various image-quality improvement algorithms such as high dynamic range (HDR) to lead the market.

LG Display introduced its extremely thin “Wallpaper” OLED TV panels in 2016 and 2017, a design differentiation that leveraged the structural merits of OLED. Around this time, the company also developed an OLED panel integrated speaker, Crystal Sound OLED, as a convergence product, launching it in 2017.

Crystal Sound OLED technology operates on the key principle of vibrating the panel with the exciter attached to the back of the panel and separating one panel into the stereo sound. This technology is possible because OLED panels do not require a backlight unit. In regular TV, a speaker is placed on the back of the panel to project the sound around the outside of the set, so the sound characteristics are uneven and the sound is easily affected by the environment. On the other hand, TVs with Crystal Sound technology (the vibrations generated by the exciter transmit their sound directly to the audience through the OLED panel) reproduce crisp, clear, and balanced sound from low to high frequency.

In normal TVs, the imagery and sound emerge from different places, but the Crystal Sound technology enables sounds to emit from exactly the same place as the video. In other words, the position of the person’s face and the position of the sound are exactly matched, so that the sound is natural and maximizes the realistic feeling, thereby increasing the immersion of the viewer.

LG Display expects this technology to expand into a variety of areas, such as smartphones, monitors, automobiles, and OLED lighting.

2017 Award Winners

Displays of the Year

Award: LG Display’s 65-in. Wallpaper OLED TV

In 2013, LG Display launched one of the world’s first 55-in. full-high-definition (FHD) OLED TVs. In 2015, the company introduced a lineup of 55-in., 65-in., and 77-in. ultra-high-definition (UHD) OLED TVs. LG Display then incorporated high-dynamic range (HDR) and Digital Cinema Initiative (DCI) technologies into these TVs to improve the picture quality, and developed curved, 4-sided-borderless, and slim designs for improved design differentiation.

In 2016 and 2017, LG Display launched its Wallpaper OLED TV panels. Its 65-in. Wallpaper OLED display demonstrates a combination of excellent image quality and streamlined design that is possible only with OLED technology. The panel’s most notable feature is the unique form factor: It’s much slimmer and lighter (with a thickness of 3.9 mm and a weight of 7.4 kilograms) than conventional TVs, and fits right against a wall – hence the name “Wallpaper.”

For the Wallpaper display, LG developed a unique interface based on the V-by-One HS digital signaling standard, and included high-bandwidth digital-content protection (HDCP) in order to transmit video data and control signals between the display and the driver circuit board. The company also designed a slim, flat external cable (0.47 m) that enables simultaneous transmission of panel power and video data to the UHD panel – 700 watts of power and a frame rate of up to 120Hz. This is an industry first, and allows the driver circuit board and power unit to be separate from the panel rather than mounted on the back, as is typically done for TVs. This is part of what enables the panel to be so thin – the driver circuit board and the power unit together are about one-third the size of the panel, with a thickness of more than 20 mm. For optimal attachment to the wall, LG Display also developed a back cover less than 3 mm thick that uses magnetic sheets and a hook.

LG Display anticipates that the Wallpaper form factor will be a trendsetter in the TV market.

Award: Samsung Display’s Quad-bended Flexible AMOLED Display

Since 2013, Samsung Display has regularly launched new products based on flexible displays that enable smartphone design innovation. The company’s first flexible product was a curved AMOLED display (SID’s 2014 Display of the Year); the next was a bended AMOLED display (YOUM, which was SID’s 2015 Display of the Year).

In 2016, Samsung Display launched a new flexible product, the Quad-bended AMOLED Display, which surpasses the company’s previous flexible offerings in many ways. To begin with, its “quad edge” flexible technology, a world’s first, is not only on the sides of the display, but on the top and bottom as well. Samsung created this display, used in the Galaxy S7 Edge smartphone, by adopting special curved technology that varies the radius for the curvature ofthe OLED panel from 35R to 3.8R. This enables the Galaxy S7 Edge to attain extremely fine contours and provide a more comfortable grip for the user. To make a naturally appearing curved edge, a four-step radius (35R, 9.4R, 5.4R, 3.8R) design process was applied to the left and right edges and a 25R radius was applied to the top and bottom.1 The quad-bended AMOLED flexible display’s efficient circuit plan also dramatically reduces dead space around the edges of the display to 1.09 mm – a record metric for Samsung Display.

In addition to all these design advantages, the display provides very high image quality. It has quad HD (2,560 x 1,440 resolution at 577 ppi) and meets Adobe RGB at 100% with an infinite contrast ratio.1

Display Components of the Year

Award: Luminit’s Transparent Holographic Component for Motorcycle Head-up Display

Luminit’s patented holographic master recording technology has led to a number of breakthroughs in special-purpose head-mounted displays (HMDs) and head-up displays (HUDs), including, most recently, the company’s transparent holographic components (THCs). These components offer multiple opportunities for the automotive and wearables industries for head-up, helmet-mounted, or near-to-eye display systems. REYEDR, a developer of HUDs for motorcycles, created the first display product for the public that uses Luminit’s optical components.

With Luminit THC, holographic wavefronts are embedded onto a thin, clear photopolymer film that can be applied to glass or acrylic surfaces such as a helmet visor or eyeglasses. When an image is projected onto the surface, the THC translates that information into a virtual image to the viewer. The transparent film is lightweight and allows the maximum amount of light (>90%) from the forward field of view to pass through to the viewer. Because the holographic information is captured on thin, flexible film, engineers can create unique displays that would otherwise be too heavy or impractical with conventional optics. THC replaces conventional, prism-based optics with fully see-through technology that allows the images to be viewed at a virtual distance without added weight to the user.

Luminit’s THCs are the first mass-produced, volume holographic components to be utilized in displays. In the REYEDR product, the holograms are integrated into a novel, non-planar waveguide, offering improved ergonomics and industrial design relative to conventional, flat, waveguide optics. THC enables HUD systems with a virtual image, eliminating the need for eye accommodation while riding or driving. Luminit’s roll-to-roll mass production of volume holograms allows THC to enter the market at a cost point consistent with consumer electronics pricing for augmented reality.

Award: Nanosys’s Hyperion Quantum Dots

Nanosys’s Hyperion Quantum Dots represent a significant development breakthrough for enabling displays to meet the BT.2020 ultra-high-definition (UHD) color standard. These quantum dots match the color performance of the industry’s best cadmium-based materials without requiring an exemption to the European Union’s Restriction on Hazardous Substances (RoHS) Directive.

Nanosys has partnered with Hitachi Chemical to begin mass-producing quantum-dot enhancement film (QDEF) with Hyperion quantum dots immediately. These materials integrate seamlessly into Nanosys’s current QDEF manufacturing process.

Nanosys has demonstrated over 90% BT.2020 color gamut using Hyperion Quantum Dots in a sheet of QDEF with cadmium levels below the 100-ppm limit established by the RoHS Directive, thereby eliminating the need for an exemption. This is accomplished by combining an entirely cadmium-free red quantum dot with a green quantum dot engineered to have an exceptionally narrow emission spectrum and ultra-low cadmium content. With Hyperion quantum dots, display makers finally have a long-term, RoHS-compliant quantum dot material for BT.2020 displays.

Display Applications of the Year

Award: Apple’s MacBook Pro with Touch Bar

Apple brings a new dimension of interactivity to the MacBook Pro with the revolutionary new Touch Bar. The Touch Bar is a multi-touch, Retina-resolution OLED display right on the keyboard. It delivers useful shortcuts and tools to your fingertips, based on the app you’re in and what you’re doing within it. By delivering context-specific features and controls, the Touch Bar can make an unfamiliar app more accessible to a new user, and it can empower pros by enabling greater efficiency in their workflows.

From a technical standpoint, the creation of the Touch Bar required many breakthroughs in the field of OLED displays. In particular, the Touch Bar features a Retina-resolution (221-dpi) display, which enables sharp, print-quality icons and fonts. Additionally, the Touch Bar cover glass is engineered with nano-structures to minimize surface reflection and distortion, giving the Touch Bar a look and feel that blend seamlessly into the keyboard. The inclusion of the Touch Bar on the MacBook Pro also inspired enhancements to its high-luminance liquid-crystal main display. The polarizers in both displays are designed to minimize surface reflection from the other display and to reduce other ambient cross-talk. Color management is synchronized in both displays to provide matching color between the Touch Bar and the main display, an aspect that visual artists and creative pros especially appreciate. Overall, the Touch Bar marries the input and display of information within a laptop architecture in a novel way and radically reimagines the interplay of hardware and software on the MacBook Pro.

Award: Sony’s PlayStation VR

The PlayStation VR (PS VR) is a virtual reality (VR) system that takes the PlayStation4 system to the next level of immersion, and demonstrates the future of gaming. PS VR enables players to experience a sense of presence, where they feel as though they are physically inside the virtual world of a game.

The PS VR headset is equipped with a 5.7-in. 1,920 × RGB × 1,080 resolution OLED display, which enables low persistence and removes motion blur or flicker. With full RGB sub-pixel structure in full HD resolution and an original optical element on the top of the display, “screen door effect” (a visual artifact of displays, in which the fine lines separating pixels or subpixels become visible in the displayed image) is minimized, even with an approximately 100-degree-wide field of view.

In addition, the OLED display supports a 120Hz refresh rate and produces extremely smooth visual imagery, achieving a new level of visual experience. All those optimized display features for VR help deliver that sense of “being there” for the player. •

2016 Award Winners

Displays of the Year

Award: Apple iPad Pro 12.9-in. Display with Variable Refresh Rate

Apple’s iPad Pro features a 12.9-in.-diagonal display with 5.6 million pixels at 264 ppi. The display incorporates an oxide-TFT backplane to ensure fast pixel charging and improved brightness uniformity. This is the first time that a mainstream display comes with the new power-saving feature of content-dependent variable refresh rate (VRR). The iPad Pro keeps track of when content on the screen is not moving (and thus does not need to be refreshed as often) and cuts the display’s refresh rate in half (from 60 times per second to 30) during these intervals. Apple’s designers achieved the flicker-free transition between 60- and 30-Hz refresh rates by engineering and integrating a low-leakage-current oxide TFT, a special negative liquid-crystal material with low flexo-electricity, advanced photo-alignment materials, and a customized new timing controller. With the help of the device’s system-on-a-chip (SoC) and operating system, the display refresh rate automatically switches between 60 and 30 Hz, depending upon the content being displayed, achieving power saving without any degradation in image quality. The iPad Pro 12.9-in. display also features ultra-low reflectivity enabled by advanced anti-reflection coating on the cover glass surface and optical bonding between the display, touch sensor, and cover glass. Apple believes that the success of the 12.9-in. iPad Pro display will help accelerate a general display-industry technology transition from a-Si to oxide TFTs.

Award: Japan Display Inc. 17.3-in. 8K x 4K LTPS TFT-LCD module

Japan Display Inc. (JDI) has developed the world’s first 17.3-in. high-resolution (7680 × 4320 pixels) fast-response (120-Hz frame rate) LCD module. The module, which is based on low-temperature polysilicon (LTPS) technology with 8K pixels in an RGB stripe arrangement, realizes high-definition (510 ppi) images, and the fast frame rate enables the smooth playback of moving imagery. By providing a wide viewing angle, high contrast, and minimal color shift, IPS technology, combined with the high pixel density, makes possible life-like 8K imagery that offers a sense of depth and an immersive image experience. The 17.3-in. size is standard for monitors used in video image production, and the next-generation 8K technology suits that market, as well as medical and gaming applications that require high resolution and image-quality depth. In terms of 8K broadcasting, the Japan Broadcasting Company (NHK) and its research arm have been proponents for several years. (See the article “ ‘Super Hi-Vision’ as Next-Generation Television and Its Video Parameters” by researchers from NHK in the December 2012 issue of Information Display.) That article mentioned an early trial in which select groups of people in London, Bradford, Glasgow, the U.S., and Japan watched the Olympic Opening Ceremonies 4 years ago in Super Hi-Vision or 8K. Since then, there have been public 8K viewings that included the Sochi Olympics, the FIFA World Cup in 2014, and more than 15 separate viewing events in 2015. NHK, with a web site dedicated to 8K (www.nhk.or.jp/8k/index_e.html), is clearly committed to the technology, and numerous sources report that 8K will be used to broadcast the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, as well as a portion of the 2016 Olympics in Rio this summer. High-resolution modules like JDI’s are set to take advantage of this broadcast technology.

Display Components of the Year

Award: Corning Iris Glass Light-Guide Plate

In the early 2000s, Corning LCD glass substrates began enabling the transformation of televisions from big bulky consoles to sleek contemporary models. By 2014, Corning realized that a glass innovation was required to enable the thin LCD mega-trend to continue. Thin LCDs had become limited by challenges from using polymer light-guide plates (LGPs). An LGP is used in the backlight of edge-lit LCDs to distribute light evenly throughout the display, a key factor in a crisp brilliant image. Polymer LGPs lack the dimensional stability required for ultra-slim displays. When a polymer LGP is subjected to heat and humidity, the material can warp and expand, compromising its opto-mechanical performance. The instability of polymer requires designers to add a wider bezel and thicker backlight with air gaps to compensate for this movement. Replacing polymer with glass solves this problem, but standard glass compositions have not met the optical requirements until now. Color purity is another key requirement of an LGP. A combination of Corning’s proprietary fusion process and Iris Glass’ composition positions Corning’s light-guide plate offering to achieve color-shift performance that matches best-in-class material. Corning Iris Glass offers outstanding dimensional stability while ensuring superior optical performance that enables manufacturers to offer thinner TVs.

Apple’s iPad Pro features a 12.9-in.-diagonal display with 5.6

Compared to conventional light-guide plates (LGPs) made from acrylic resin, Asahi Glass Company’s (AGC’s) new XCV glass substrate offers more than 20 times greater stiffness and a coefficient of thermal expansion reduced by a factor of 8. This means that TVs made with this glass can be very thin (as thin as 5 mm). XCV’s resistance to heat and moisture means the bezel can be narrower and also contributes to long-term reliability, which will be useful in the future when displays may require considerably higher luminance. Light-guide plates use the edge-lit method to transmit and diffuse light from LEDs placed at a screen’s edges, resulting in improved backlighting of the screen. Whereas existing glass materials were not suited to LGPs due to their low transmittance, XCV is highly suitable because it offers the necessary high transmittance to assure extra-bright displays. AGC, by adopting its proprietary extra-efficient float process developed for the production of large glass substrates, is now able to mass-produce and quickly deliver XCV to meet demands from TV and display manufacturers. In addition, AGC can supply the glass with printed dot patterns, which maximizes XCV’s performance and helps manufacturers adopt the glass LGP more easily.

Award: Nitto Denko Ultra-Thin Polarizer

The ultra-thin polarizer developed by Nitto Denko has high optical properties and low shrinkage and is considerably thinner than standard polarizers. In recent years, as displays such as LCDs and OLEDs have become ever thinner, display components, including polarizing films, have had to become thinner as well. Polarizing film is an optical film made of a polarizer and a protection film and is one of the most important components of displays because it determines optical properties. Generally, a polarizer is made by dyeing polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) film with iodine, then stretching it in water. The higher the PVA-iodine complex is oriented, the higher the optical properties of the polarizer. Polarizers with a highly oriented PVA-iodine complex provide higher definition. However, the shrinkage force generated by the stretching process becomes a concern, particularly because the polarizer shrinks in high temperatures, and the shrinkage force of the polarizer can cause panel bending, display distortion, and dimensional variance. In the past, many studies have been carried out to resolve the shrinkage issue of polarizers. But current technology cannot manufacture a polarizer thinner than 10 µm with PVA film. At present, the standard thickness of polarizers is still about 25 µm and the minimum thickness for practical applications is still 12 µm. This is because controlling the shrinkage force of a polarizer without losing good productivity and high optical properties is a difficult issue. To solve this issue, Nitto Denko developed an all-new ultra-thin polarizer with a thickness of 5 µm, which is about 80% thinner than the standard polarizer made from PVA film. And the shrinkage force of this polarizer has been cut down dramatically. Dimensional variance after heating has been reduced by 60%. At the same time, the optical properties are as high as those of standard polarizers. This new ultra-thin polarizer offers various improvements. For example, its low shrinkage force solved the panel bending issues with heating. And this new polarizer rarely causes display distortion. Furthermore, the new polarizer has drastically improved handling ability. This polarizer is making considerable contributions to the development of ever thinner LCD panels, as well as to the creation of next-generation displays, such as flexible displays and wearable displays.

Display Applications of the Year

Award: Apple Watch with Retina Plastic OLED

Apple Watch’s flexible OLED Retina display incorporates edge-folding of the display substrate to a sub-millimeter radius that allows the display to occupy a maximal and symmetric portion of the watch face. According to Apple, the emissive technology of an OLED also enables power-saving capabilities. (Battery life is still a major challenge for wearable devices.) Apple Watch comes in both 1.34- and 1.54-in. sizes. At 326 ppi, the OLED display allows clear representations of imagery such as the sweeping second hand of a “traditional” watch, and its deep contrast allows a seamless blending of the user interface into the physical product. Each display is calibrated to produce an industry-standard color gamut that ensures a matched appearance between Apple Watch and the user’s paired iPhone. Apple Watch is designed to be a highly accurate timepiece, a personal communication device, and a health and fitness companion. The watch face is highly customizable for personal expression. With its low emissive power and carefully designed user interface, the watch has helped usher in a new era of display applications for wearable products.

Award: Microsoft Surface Book Laptop Computer

Microsoft’s Surface Book laptop has an easily detachable screen that can be used like a clipboard. Integral to these features is Surface Book’s 13.5-in. PixelSense display – a screen designed for optimal image quality with touch and pen input. The 6-million-pixel display has a resolution of 3000 × 2000 for an industry-leading 267 ppi to ensure that, even up close, users see smooth lines with no pixilation. The PixelSense display on Surface Book features negative liquid-crystal technology and photo-alignment to increase light transmission, overall brightness, and contrast. The resulting contrast ratio of 1700:1 makes reading easier and provides for brilliant colors. PixelSense uses optical bonding to reduce glare and an in-plane-switching-type LCD to ensure that the display retains color accuracy over a full range of viewing angles. Every display is color calibrated. Multi-touch capability and the Surface Pen also distinguish Surface Book from other premium laptops, allowing users to create beyond the capability of keyboard and mouse. Surface Book’s 1024 levels of pressure sensitivity and reduced latency are designed to make writing or drawing on Surface Book feel as natural and accurate as writing with pen on paper. To minimize parallax, the components of the display stack were designed to be as thin as possible without sacrificing performance. This thin display stack was achieved by using cover glass that is only 0.4 mm thick, a touch sensor film that’s thinner than a few human hairs, LCD glass that is 0.2-mm thick, thin polarizers that offer optimal viewing in all directions, and optical bonding with the thinnest possible adhesives. Optimization of the software and firmware, Microsoft’s custom silicon, and the efficiencies in Windows 10 combine to reduce latency so that digital ink appears instantly at the touch of the pen. Surface Book runs Windows 10 and features sixth-generation Intel Core i5 or i7 processors. It is available with up to 16 GB of memory, an optional discrete graphics chip, and up to 1 TB of storage.

2015 Award Winners

Displays of the Year

Gold Award: Samsung’s YOUM Bended Display

The YOUM Bended Display (a flexible AMOLED display) represents a major step forward for design innovation in the smartphone market, with the world’s smallest radius for screen curvature on a mobile device. Samsung’s flexible AMOLED technology is the vanguard of the second phase in the evolution of curved displays – bended displays. Displays will evolve from curved to bended, to foldable, and then “rollable” designs. The company‘s state-of-the-art flexible AMOLED display, often referred to as an ‘edge’ display, is now featured on the popular Galaxy Note 4 and a newer version is now being used in the Galaxy S6 Edge, on which it curves over onto both sides, or edges, of the phone. The 5.59-in. WGXGA (2560 × 1600 resolution) display uses a polyimide plastic substrate material to produce a film less than a millimeter thick. That’s thinner than any other display on the market today. Samsung has been able to deposit an electronic circuit onto the substrate and evaporate a luminant RGB organic device to realize the display’s industry-leading bendable characteristic. The display enhances the user experience in a number of ways. Thanks to a 6.9R curvature, it allows a consumer to easily grab onto it with just one hand and also reduces finger fatigue. In addition, it delivers the finest image detail and the smoothest fonts available. The YOUM Bended Display has one of the industry’s highest color reproduction rates. It can depict 97% of Adobe RGB, while a typical LCD panel can replicate only about 70%. Owing to its emissive OLED technology, the device features a contrast ratio of 8,000,000:1 and is capable of switching in as little as 0.01 μsec. The era of Big Data is accelerating, and the amount of information transfer continues to explode. Under these circumstances, information providers and growing legions of users will want to take advantage of the additional area provided by the smartphone’s edges, which previously were considered just dead space. There is seemingly no limit to the growing number of areas of electronics in which Samsung flexible AMOLED displays can be applied. In the future, more consumer products such as wearables and other entry devices to the Internet of Things will embrace the usefulness and attractiveness of flexible-display curvature and the vibrant, feature-rich world of AMOLED imagery.

Silver Award: LG Display’s 65-in. UHD Curved OLED TV Panel

Following the introduction of one of the world’s first OLED TVs, a 55-in. full-HD TV in early 2013, LG Display introduced an even larger TV in 2014, the 65-in. UHD OLED TV. For this display, LG Display utilizes WRGB OLED technology, including an oxide-TFT backplane with WRGB architecture, which the company believes is the optimal technical solution for large-sized OLED-TV panels. In addition, LG Display’s state-of-the-art panels leverage the innate curved design abilities of OLED to provide an aesthetically pleasing TV with an optimal viewing experience. LG Display’s 65-in. UHD OLED-TV panel is sleek and slim: a panel that is only 6 mm thick with a left and right bezel width of 8 mm. It offers superior picture quality, achieving remarkably rich and natural colors with its UHD subpixels. Because OLEDs are composed of self-luminous organic diodes that form each pixel, every pixel emits its own light, and color contrast is optimized. In addition, an OLED can produce perfect blacks and an infinite contrast ratio with deeper and richer colors because there is no light leakage from a backlight. The panel also delivers clear images with a less than 0.001-msec response time. Users will also enjoy the more theater-like viewing experience offered by the curved screen’s wider and brighter field of view. The IMAX-like curvature of the screen minimizes visual distortion and loss of detail. LG Display’s curved OLED-TV panel also incorporates the company’s acclaimed FPR 3D viewing technology, which minimizes eye and body muscle strain in viewers. The added FPR 3D film on curved OLED TVs offers better depth as well as a clearer 3D effect.

Display Components of the Year

Gold Award: Merck KGaA’s Liquid-Crystal Materials for Ultra-Brightness FFS-LCDs

In recent years, displays for mobile electronic devices have been revolutionized, driven mostly by smartphones and tablets. Among key trends for such devices based on LCDs are improved contrast, a very good viewing angle, high color performance, and especially ultra-high resolution. This last trend goes hand in hand with a tendency toward more “refined” display technologies, namely, fringe-field switching (FFS). Merck KGaA of Darmstadt, Germany, has developed liquid crystals for the next generation of displays in cooperation with industry partner LC display manufacturers. As the latest innovative LCD technology, Ultra-Brightness FFS (UB-FFS) offers a future-oriented technology that was brought to the market in 2014 for smartphones and will be introduced in 2015 for most small, medium, and IT applications such as tablets and monitors. In conjunction with a corresponding panel design, the innovative energy-saving UB-FFS LC mixture permits LC display light transmittance that is up to 15% higher than conventional FFS. UB-FFS uses liquid crystals with negative dielectric anisotropy, whereas “conventional” FFS uses liquid crystals with positive dielectric anisotropy. There were two key challenges to overcome for market introduction: The first was to provide liquid crystals with a sufficiently fast switching speed. The second was to maintain the high reliability level of FFS even though completely different materials with much higher requirements were used. The higher display transmissions enabled by the new UB-FFS liquid crystals allow greater design freedom for product developers. Devices now can be made slimmer because of the possibility of using thinner batteries. Alternatively, designers can opt for a longer battery run-time because fewer LEDs will be required for the backlighting. The higher transmission can also lead to cost reduction for manufacturers and hence for consumers. Merck KGaA continuously developed new innovative liquid crystals and liquid-crystal mixtures for UB-FFS and finally fulfilled all the requirements for mass production. Based on the recent development of fast-switching LC mixtures, the new generation of Merck KGaA’s products enables the application of UB-FFS for nearly all display applications. With a business model of close partnerships in the industry, Merck KGaA is able to offer LC solutions for new technologies such as UB-FFS that can easily be implemented in the existing LCD production setup.

Silver Award: Intel’s RealSense Technology

Intel RealSense technology is a new type of human–computer interface and input device based on real-time depth sensing to enable natural user interactions with content on interactive displays and computers. Available on today’s most innovative PCs, the Intel RealSense cameras simulate human eyes to add a new dimension to user experience. Users can bring toys, games, and books to life using free hand movements to interact with characters and capture faces and objects with 3D scanning technology for sharing, editing, and 3D printing. The Intel RealSense camera contains a standard video camera as well as infrared sensing components that work together to allow the device to infer depth by detecting infrared light that has bounced back from objects in front of it. It can track up to 22 joints in each hand and even understands the rotation and finger movements of two hands simultaneously. This data, taken in combination with the Intel RealSense software platform, creates a touch-free interface that responds to hand and head motions as well as facial expressions. Intel RealSense cameras elevate the user interface to futuristic levels by sensing depth and tracking human motion, letting you interact with your device more like you interact with people – with natural movements. Intel RealSense technology senses distance and movement right from your device so you can scan and save a piece of art, a flower, a toy – even your own face. You are able to save your scan as-is or manipulate it into something new. Then share it digitally or print a version with the use of a 3D printer. Make your chat space whatever it needs to be. Because the Intel RealSense camera senses depth, you are able to remove your chat background altogether or swap in a replacement and make it look like you are somewhere else. It works like an instant virtual green screen. Intel RealSense technology is designed to redefine how we are able to interact with our devices, using world-class digital-sensing technology to bring consumers new ways to create, share, and collaborate in a 3D world.

Display Applications of the Year

Gold Award: Apple’s iMac with 5K Retina Display

The 27-in. iMac with Retina 5K display features 14.7 million pixels and a resolution of 5120 × 2880. With four times more pixels than the standard 27-in. iMac and 67% more pixels than a 4K display, text looks as sharp as it does on a printed page, and users can see more of their high-resolution photos with pixel-for-pixel detail. The display on the new 27-in. iMac has been engineered for performance, power efficiency, and stunning visual quality. It uses a precisely manufactured oxide-TFT-based panel to deliver vivid display brightness from corner to corner. A single supercharged Apple-designed timing controller (TCON), with four times the bandwidth of conventional-panel TCONs, drives all 14.7 million pixels. The iMac with Retina 5K display also uses highly efficient LEDs and organic passivation to improve image quality and reduce display power consumption by 30%, even while driving four times more pixels at the same brightness. To improve the contrast ratio, the iMac with Retina 5K display uses a new photo-alignment process and compensation film to deliver blacker blacks and more vibrant colors from any viewing angle. In addition, every iMac with Retina 5K display is calibrated using three state-of-the-art spectroradiometers to ensure precise and accurate color. The iMac with Retina 5K display is also packed with the latest technologies for power-ful performance, including a 3.5-GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.9 GHz. It also features AMD Radeon R9 M290X graphics, delivering up to 3.5 teraflops of computing power, the most powerful graphics ever offered on an iMac; as well as 8 GB of memory, a 1 TB Fusion Drive, and two Thunderbolt 2 ports that deliver up to 20 Gbps each, twice the bandwidth of the previous generation.

Silver Award: LG Display’s 1.3-in. Circular Plastic OLED for the G Watch R

LG Display has successfully developed a 1.3-in. full-circle plastic OLED panel for use in its G Watch R. The design incorporates 320 × 320 pixel resolution, a touch sensor, and a barrier film that enables an ultra-thin and lightweight display. The panel also uses new power-saving algorithms that enable an always-on function that provides users with the sensibility of a conventional analog watch along with the convenience of a digital smartwatch. The truly circular plastic OLED display, the first of its kind, will bring a change to the display paradigm by overcoming the limits of conventional displays. The round shape allows more design flexibility in various products compared to conventional square displays. This innovative design will contribute to display-market development beyond watches to other wearables, including clothing, and also automotive applications.

To view previous years DIA awards 2014 & prior go to DISPLAY INDUSTRY AWARDS ARCHIVE