Samsung Display is considering to suspend one of its LCD panel production facilities in South Korea because of oversupply, the company said this week. There is no final decision yet, but falling profitability and lowering demand could trigger the company to halt manufacturing.

LCD panels for various applications including computer displays, televisions, smartphones, digital signage, and other are produced at dozens of factories in China, Japan, South Korea, and other countries creating oversupply and cut-throat competition. Given macroeconomic uncertainties, demand for numerous devices such as TVs is expected to be weak during the year-end shopping season, which puts further pressure on panel makers.

Samsung and other advanced makers have tried to differentiate their own LCD-based products by adding quantum-dot films and other improvements to displays or TVs (to their backlighting, to be more precise), which certainly helped to improve image quality produced by these devices and enabled the manufacturer to charge a premium. Meanwhile, it looks like there are simply way too many LCD panels made these days.

Being the world’s largest maker of LCDs, Samsung operates two giant LCD production facilities in South Korea, as well as one in China. The company naturally wants to keep the latter plant, but the fate of one of the sites in South Korea is something that remains to be seen.

The official statement by Samsung reads as follows:

“Samsung Display has been adjusting the production output and facility operation due to oversupply and worsening profitability, and we are still considering the suspension of the line, but nothing has been decided.”

Samsung’s rival LG Display has converted one of its LCD lines to an OLED plant. In fact, LGD has been focusing on production of OLEDs for quite some time and opened up new OLED sites both in China and in South Korea. Moreover, the company is also considering various scenarios for its remaining LCD facility in South Korea, according to a claim made by its CFO last month.

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Source: Reuters

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  • jordanclock - Friday, August 16, 2019 - link

    How long until we get a bunch of armchair analysts proclaiming this as part of some sort of price fixing scheme?
  • FreckledTrout - Friday, August 16, 2019 - link

    I don't think you will see that happening. The writing has been on the wall that OLED would take over a lot of LCD sales as it becomes cheaper. LG should have a 48" TV out sometime this year which likely will be the death nail on high end LCD TV's.
  • close - Friday, August 16, 2019 - link

    OLED is the 3D of current times. For the rare occasions you actually enjoy that contrast you get to live with the substantial upfront const and the technical downsides, like burn-in. Every generation promises "fo' real this time shouldn't be an issue" and yet every time it is.
  • ABR - Friday, August 16, 2019 - link

    I had an OLED phone for a few years (before the end of Windows Phone). Never had any problems, and I still miss it.
  • Alistair - Friday, August 16, 2019 - link

    you forget, not just contrast, HDR color, per pixel dimming, faster response times etc.
  • imaheadcase - Saturday, August 17, 2019 - link

    3d of current times? You must be high, or have not looked into OLED tv lately. Burn in is a NON ISSUE for home tv watchers. Upfront costs? Every christmas a 55 inch LG tv is like $1200. That is a steal for how long they last and what you get. They sell out almost every christmas.
  • FunBunny2 - Saturday, August 17, 2019 - link

    "That is a steal for how long they last and what you get. "

    Isn't that what they said about plasma? and anyway haven't there been LED TeeVee sets for years? of course, they were just LCD panels with LED backlight. have we finally gotten panels with (O)LED pixels? or are we still in backlight age?
  • jajig - Saturday, August 17, 2019 - link

    I still have my Panasonic plasma going strong and looking beautiful.
  • eldakka - Sunday, August 18, 2019 - link

    We have had TVs with OLED - each pixel generates and emits its own light - for several years now. That is what LG OLED TVs that have been around for 6+ years are. (I'm guessing on how long LG have been making them, as I have a 2016 LG OLED, and it was definitely a few generations into the product line by that time)
  • PeachNCream - Friday, August 16, 2019 - link

    This plant closure (it's a sure thing already, of course) is OBVIOUSLY collusion to fix prices and punish hard working, law abiding, totally honest, decent, civilized, American men that exercise daily by lifting beers from end tables to mouths while watching football. Just look at the timing! The NFL World Series is upon is in mere months so they have to drain the supply line to drive up prices in conjunction with a made-up necessity for LG to convert to OLED which doesn't even have anything to do with display panels. I bet the entire Southern Hemisphere got together on this to arrange the plant shutdown just to hurt football fans that are only trying to watch Tiger Woods make the free throw from the finish line and cinch the checkered flag again from the clutches of Hulk Hogan to claim the trophy at this year's spelling bee!!!!!! STUPID SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE! It's those Antarcticans and thieir nefarious plotting to make bowling into America's favorite past time so they can sell us seal skin gloves and shoes! SO TRIGGERED!!

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