According to the latest analyzes by UBI Research, mini-LED televisions will dominate the premium segment in just five years, displacing OLED to second place.
High price or premium usually starts at 1,000 euros when buying a new TV set. In this price segment, OLED televisions from LG Electronics, Sony, Philips, Panasonic and Co. have particularly spread over the past few years. LCD (QLED) televisions, which delivered an equivalent picture quality, were usually more than twice as expensive, which also explains why many manufacturers are now relying on OLED in the premium segment. With the new mini LED backlight, the dusty, but still dominant LCD technology gets a new boost. Advantages such as a perfect black display and wide contrasts are suddenly possible and affordable again. The knockout criterion for many home cinema enthusiasts, the blooming that occurs (flashing edges between light-dark transitions) should also be able to get under control.
Premium: Mini-LED share of over 50 percent by 2025
UBI Research assumes that mini LED TVs will already make up around 35.8 percent of the premium segment this year – compared to 64.2% OLED. In the following years, the market share of mini-LED televisions is expected to grow gradually and will be over 50 percent by 2024. In 2025, the weighting of 57.2 percent could already be well on the side of mini-LED TVs. The reasons given include the same or even better price / performance ratio of the mini LED TVs compared to the OLED TVs. In addition, the capacities in the LCD segment can be more easily tapped. The only manufacturer of OLED panels, LG Display, will deliver just 8 million panels in sizes from 48 to 88 inches in 2021 – according to the plan. Mini LED TVs are expected to reach around 2.5 million units in their first year (if you count the release of the TCL X10 in the second year).
Mini LEDs are placed between the LCD and OLED
Mini-LED televisions mostly use a color filter made from quantum dots (Quantum Dot or QLED) with the new mini-LED backlight. This improves the maximum brightness, black level and color reproducibility. Especially content with extended dynamic range (HDR) will benefit from this. In addition, the large number of mini-LEDs enables the contrast to be improved and the blooming effect to be reduced. The more mini LEDs, the better. According to UBI Research, mini LED TVs scheduled for sale this year will use around 1000-3000 local dimming zones. In order to achieve the same image quality as with OLED, around 100,000 local dimming zones would have to be used. However, this would cause the costs for a mini LED TV to skyrocket again.
The success of the mini LED TVs will result from the fact that the increase in the dimming zones can improve the picture quality compared to normal LCD TVs, while the production costs of the panels, especially in sizes from 70 inches, are far higher turn out cheaper than with OLED. So you are right in the middle between regular LCD and OLED TVs – quality and price!