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LG makes bendable 18-inch OLED, promises 60-inch flexi-4K TV by 2017

LG has created a bendable 18-inch OLED screen that can be rolled up into a TUBE – and the Korean firm reckons it’ll be able to make a 60-inch 4K one by 2017. 

If you’ve ever fancied rolling up your TV like a newspaper and sticking it a rucksack, then LG’s flexible OLED TV could be the one for you. The transparent 18-inch OLED panel boasts a resolution of 1,200 x 810 and can be rolled up into a tube with a radius of three centimeters and continue to display video. 

The proof of concept display has a curvature radius of 30R, which in plain English means LG can bring 50-inch-plus rollable TV sets to our shelves in the future. 

Bend me, shape me: LG hopes that its flexi-screens will one day boast 4K Ultra HD resolutions
Bend me, shape me: LG hopes that its flexi-screens will one day boast 4K Ultra HD resolutions

The transparent OLED panel boasts a 30 per cent increase in transmittance (the amount of light that gets through the panel to your eyeballs) allowing for a more vivid picture compared to previous transparent OLEDs. 

LG wants to improve on this breakthrough for rollable 4K TVs. In-Byung Kang, Senior Vice President and Head of the R&D Center at LG Display said: “LG Display pioneered the OLED TV market and is now leading the next-generation applied OLED technology.  

The reasons for owning a transparent TV are actually pretty opaque.
The reasons for owning a transparent TV are actually pretty opaque.

Aside from being very clever, what’s the point of having a rollable TV display? Let alone one that’s transparent? 

Flexible panels mean that we might one day actually see motorised curved TVs like the one Samsung demoed at CES 2014. The rationale behind curved TVs is that more light is directed towards a sweet spot for a solo viewer sat in the middle of the couch. 

By having a flexible curved OLED, you could potentially have a TV set that changes its shape automatically depending on how many people are sat in front of it.

The rollable, transparent nature of a TV like this could also see it used as a high-tech projector; you could mount it on a large white wall and then roll it up when you’re done with it. 

Aside from that we’re not sure why anybody would want a see-through TV, apart from the obvious bragging rights factor. 

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