I have just learned that Kopin plans to show their OLED microdisplay line up at CES, including a preview of their latest 1.3” 2.6K x 2.6K display (2560 x 2560 resolution) aimed for next generation AR/VR/XR applications. Kopin also plans to highlight latest advances in their 0.49” 720p and 0.99” 2K x 2K devices.
Kopin has been making microdisplays for more than 30 years and is well known to many in the industry with LCOS, LCD and now OLED offerings. One of their key strengths is their backplane design expertise, which includes proprietary and patented wafer treatment methods that facilitate the OLED deposition by any OLED foundry. This seems to provide advantages for both manufacturing and product performance.
For manufacturing, their strategy is for Kopin to design the backplanes in-house, to have proprietary Si backplane wafers processed at Si foundries including their integrated anode for OLED, and to use external OLED fabs for the frontplane manufacturing. It is not so easy to develop a single silicon backplane that can be used on different frontplane manufacturing lines, but the approach seems to be working – they have now successfully produced displays with three OLED deposition partners. This approach gives them manufacturing flexibility to play to each deposition partner’s strengths and should lead to competitive prices on the displays.
Kopin’s technical approach includes a unique approach to double-stack OLED deposition. Kopin claims its backplane wafers enable higher brightness, lower power consumption, longer life and more uniform display images.
Who are Kopin’s OLED partners? Kunming BOE Display Technology, Yunnan Olightek Optoelectrics Technology, and Lakeside Optoelectronic Technology. BOE is one of the largest display makers in the world while Olightek is a well-known OLED supplier as well. I am not familiar with Lakeside Optoelectronic but I understand that Kopin will be demonstrating displays produced at each of the three OLED foundries in their CES suite, so I am interested to both learn more about them and see the displays from each. I am also curious to learn if these three frontplane foundries will make all three devices or if one device is assigned to each frontplane supplier.
If OLED microdisplays are of interest to you, you should go see Kopin’s devices in their CES suite.