In the past year, rumors have suggested that Apple is working on a television set of its own to compete with the ‘Smart TVs’ out on the market from competitors such as Vizio and Samsung. Now, it seems that Apple is moving ahead with these plans and is beginning to make the rumored plans a reality.
According to the OLED Association, Apple has hired James (Jueng-jil) Lee, a senior researcher from LG Display, likely to help create a display much larger than any of Apple’s current products. At LG Display, Lee helped create a printed organic light-emitting diode (OLED) television and also has experience creating LCD displays at Samsung. Apple currently does not have any OLED products, and as a result, does not have any staff on board that is as knowledgeable about the technology as Lee.
Prior to joining LG Display, Dr. Lee was responsible for development at Cambridge Display Technology (CDT, now Sumitomo), the leading developer of solution-based polymer based OLED material. Dr. Lee is a part of the CTO’s organization and will draw on resources from Apple’s display group. He is no doubt more knowledgeable about OLEDs that any of Apple’s current staff, which is known to be quite strong.
OLED display technology is far superior to LCD technology, mainly because of its higher contrast ratio than LCD screens. OLED displays are typically thinner than LCD displays which affects Apple’s product line greatly as the company constantly strives to make its products thinner.
Apple has not released any details about whether or not it is planning to enter the television market anytime soon, however, CEO Tim Cook did note in an interview with NBC’s Brian William that this is “an area of intense interest”. By hiring Lee, it is made clear that Apple is looking into introducing a television set although an announcement timeframe remains unclear.