Display industry is blooming while the global economy slows down
The Display industry is a comprehensive industry involved in various sectors, like optoelectronic materials and devices, optical engineering, microelectronics, and electronics. In recent years, with the emergence of 5g, big data, AI and other information technology, display has integrated with ultra-high-definition video, flexibility, sensing and printed electronics, enriching the new display terminal product system. For example, new display technologies and products such as printing display, Mini/Micro LED display, laser display, and electronic paper display basically have the conditions for industrialization, which has led for a comprehensive technological innovation of the entire display industry chain including display materials, devices, equipment and manufacturing technology.
In the post-epidemic era, the new display industry has risen against downward tendency, and the global output value and output of new displays have reached a new high. It is expected to see the healthy and sustainable development of the global new display market.
In 2020, the Covid-19 epidemic brought a huge impact to the global economy, and the global economic development slowed down. However, the post-epidemic era has spawned a comprehensive increase in global demand for remote meetings, distance education, and home entertainment, bringing greater demand to the display industry. The industry has risen against downward tendency.
In 2021, the output value and output of the global new display industry reached a new high. According to data from CODA, the global new display industry is worth US$254.77 billion in 2021, a year-on-year increase of 16.4%. The output of display devices (panels) accounts for about 59.4%, a year-on-year increase of 27%. The output of display materials accounts for 36.9%, a year-on-year increase of 12.3%. And the output of display equipment accounts for 3.7%, a negative growth of 41.4% year on year. The annual display device shipment area is expected to be 253.37 million square meters, a year-on-year increase of 4.4%. The Chinese mainland continues to be the top in global display device shipments, with the expected output of US$95.298 billion in the whole year, a year-on-year increase of 46.9%. Its annual shipment area is expected to be 158.67 million square meters, a year-on-year increase of 17.9%, and the profitability of key enterprises in the industry will be greatly improved. The "double growth" of the industry shows that the healthy and sustainable development of the global new display market is still expected, and "Display made in China" has become the most important growth pole which leads the development of the global display industry.
In 2022, the global display panel market size would exceed 130 billion US dollars. TFT-LCD panels would maintain a stable growth. The market size of TFT-LCD panels would reach 94.6 billion US dollars, accounting for about 70%.
The display panel market mainly consists of TFT-LCD and OLED. According to IHS data, the display panel market capacity increased from 172 million square meters in 2015 to 242 million square meters in 2020, with a compound annual growth rate of 7.1%. With the development of display panel technology and the growth of downstream demand, the global display panel market size is expected to reach 274 million square meters in 2024. At present, the global display panel market continues to increase steadily. The global display panel shipments would reach 3.468 billion pieces in 2022, and the number of TFT-LCD panels would exceed 2.5 billion, accounting for 73%. In 2022, the global display panel market size will exceed 130 billion US dollars. TFT-LCD panels will maintain a stable growth, with a market size of 94.6 billion US dollars, accounting for about 70%.
During the production process of LCD and OLED, such products as polarizers, glass substrates, targets, photomasks, photoresists are used. Among them, the market size of polarizer will exceed 110 billion yuan. The global market size of glass substrates will reach more than 31 billion yuan. The target market is expected to reach more than 55 billion yuan. The global market size of photomask is about 8.6 billion yuan. The market size of photoresist will reach 20.2 billion yuan, and the market size of color filters will reach about 23.5 billion yuan.
In 2020, the global LED display market size is 5.53 billion US dollars. Notably, the market share of the small-pitch LED display and Mini/Micro LED display with a dot pitch of P2.5 or less is constantly increasing.
In recent years, with the maturity of LED display technology, the cost of LED display continues to decrease, the cost performance gradually improves, and the market size continues to grow. Notably, the small-pitch LED display and Mini/Micro LED display with a dot pitch of P2.5 or less gain gradual increase in market share during the penetration into the commercial and civilian markets due to its advantages like high brightness, high refresh rate and low power consumption. According to TrendForce, the global market size of LED displays in 2020 is 5.53 billion US dollars. The market size of small-pitch LED displays and Mini/MicroLED displays with a dot pitch of P2.5 or less is 2.74 billion US dollars, accounting for 49.6%.
Source: TrendForce, ASKCI
At present, the global new display industry presents four trends in its development. Firstly, the global economy has fallen significantly, but the display industry has risen against the downward trend. Secondly, the pattern of "three countries of four regions" is still the same, and the Chinese mainland surpasses others. Thirdly, information interaction is becoming more popular, and application scenarios are diversified. Lastly, mainstream technologies constantly gain improvement, and incremental innovation are being advanced.
As a carrier to display information and a window for human-computer interaction in the digital era, the new display has become a key sector in the process of upgrading information consumption, expanding the digital economy, and developing the electronic information industry. It possesses pioneering and strategic significance for the intelligent development of the global economy and society. At present, the global new display industry presents four trends in its development:
(1) The global economy has fallen significantly, but the display industry has risen against the downward trend. Affected by the Covid-19 epidemic, global demand for remote meetings, distance education, and home entertainment has increased. For example, TV sales have increased by 38% month-on-month, which is a large increase.
(2) The pattern of "three countries of four regions" is still the same, and the Chinese mainland surpasses others. At present, the production of new display panels is mainly concentrated in four regions of three countries, namely South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the Chinese mainland. Japan is the first country to realize the industrialization of TFT-LCD, and has technical expertise in liquid crystal display technology, with JDI and Sharp being representatives. South Korea's major companies in the industry are Samsung Electronics and LGD. The epidemic has accelerated South Korea's withdrawal from LCD panel production. Taiwanese enterprises develop and grow by the transfer of Japanese enterprises’ technology. Representatives are AUO Optoelectronics, Innolux Optoelectronics, and HannStar. Chinese enterprises have risen rapidly with the strong support of the government. Major enterprises are BOE, TCL CSOT, Tianma, CETC, HKC, Visionox, Longteng Optoelectronics and so on.
(3) Information interaction is becoming more popular, and application scenarios are diversified. Large-screen applications are becoming more and more prominent in Industrial Internet and the industrial field. Waterfall screens, folding screens and other new technologies are applied in cellphone screens. TV is developing with characteristics including large size, ultra-high definition, and low cost. Meanwhile, vehicle displays, intelligent displays and virtual displays are further expanding the application of new displays.
(4) Mainstream technologies constantly gain improvement, and incremental innovation are being advanced. In terms of performance, lower power consumption is being pursued, and integration has gradually become a prominent demand. Display forms are becoming more diverse, with folded, pulled and curled forms.
The rapid development of mobile Internet, intelligent terminals, artificial intelligence and industrial Internet has injected development momentum into the new display industry.
Thanks to the rapid development of new information technology such as big data, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and the Internet of Things and the promotion and application of 5G, our society has entered the era of the Internet of Everything, and "display" has become an important window for human-computer interaction. Smart phones, tablets, LCD screens have become important tools for people's daily life and work, widely used in leisure and entertainment, smart homes, education and training and wearable sectors. The new display industry is in the ascendant.
The rapid development of mobile Internet, intelligent terminals, artificial intelligence and industrial Internet has injected development momentum into the new display industry. It promotes the development of LCD, OLED, flexible display, laser display, touch and interactive display and other display technologies, and made significant progress in 8K ultra-high definition, and flexible display. The progress of new display technology has promoted the iterative upgrading of new display electronic products. Intelligence, portability and flexibility have inevitably become the trend.
In the post-epidemic era, the demand for display will become stronger in the future.
Before the epidemic, the display industry met an increase in volume and a decline in price. That is mainly because the industry has met overcapacity and performance optimization since LCD has in the mature period of the industry. In addition, since OLED is constantly penetrating into various segments other than mobile phones, the increase of production capacity obviously brings the reduction in cost. During the epidemic, the "online economy" promoted the upgrading of public awareness and constantly revealed the presence of "screen". Global demand for remote work, telemedicine, remote meetings, distance education, security monitoring, and home entertainment has increased. The pandemic has made people accustomed to and even rely on such way of socializing and working as meeting others online. Moreover, the longer the epidemic lasts, the more deeply this perception becomes and the stickier it is to the demand for display. In the post-epidemic era, the demand for display will become stronger in the future. From the perspective of industrial integration, global innovative display products continue to emerge. New displays and ultra-high-definition video, 5G, AI, AR/VR serve as application scenarios and to complement each other. This undoubtedly brings new "display opportunities" to the new display industry.
With the expansion of display applications and the continuous improvement of display requirements, new display products continue to emerge.
As a carrier of information transmission, display technology has witnessed three stages in its development. The first stage is cathode ray tube (CRT), which is mainly used in black and white TV and color CRT TV. The second stage is the coexistence of plasma technology and thin-film transistor-liquid crystal display (TFT-LCD). With the gradual improvement of liquid crystal technology, plasma technology is gradually withdrawn from the market. The third stage is OLED technology, whose biggest advantage lies in its self-illumination and flexible surface. With the expansion of display applications, the continuous improvement of display requirements, as well as the breakthrough of luminescence technology of quantum dots, a variety of new display products continue to emerge, with QLED, QD-OLED, Micro LED, QNED, etc. emerging one after another. That which technology can become the new generation of display technology in the future still needs further research and verification.
TFT-LCD display technology: With the upgrading of TFT-LCD technology, the market position of LCD has been further consolidated. TFT-LCD technology focuses on the innovation of LTPS TFT-LCD and Mini-LED backlight.
Liquid crystal display (LCD) is the most common display screen at present. The color display is achieved by the change of the liquid crystal molecular arrangement through the luminescence of backlight (LED light source) under the effect of the electric field, and plus the assistance of complex optical design like optical diaphragm. However, this backlight display is inefficient and derives excessive industrial division of labor. TFT-LCD, as an important technical branch of LCD, is constantly undergoing technological upgrades, which further consolidates the market position of LCD. At present, TFT-LCD products cover almost all display fields, and its cost-effective advantage makes the LCD panel account for 90% of market share. To resist the shock brought by other new display technologies, TFT-LCD now focuses on the innovation of low-temperature polysilicon liquid crystal display (LTPS TFT-LCD) and Mini-LED backlight. The technical shortcomings of TFT-LCD are low light transmission efficiency, high power consumption, and the inability to achieve flexible display.
Mini/Micro LED display technology: As LED display technology move towards miniaturization and matrix, Mini LED and Micro LED are gaining more attention.
With the development of semiconductor technology, LED display technology begins to move towards miniaturization and matrix. High-end display technology, namely Mini LED and Micro LED, are gaining more attention. Mini LED, regarded as the transition of Micro LED, is mostly used in traditional LCD structure. Micro LED is used to directly encapsulate light-emitting components. It can drive inorganic self-luminescence by itself and has better performance than OLED. Therefore, it is regarded as the new blue ocean in the industry. Although the Micro LED has simplified manufacturing process, the technology is more difficult, especially the giant transfer technology, which will directly affect the design cycle of Mini LED and the opportunity to produce Micro LED at a large amount in the future. As for the Mini/Micro LED displays, the Electronics and Information Technology Laboratory of the French Atomic Energy Commission launched a full-color display device with a pixel size of only 10 μm. In 2018, Samsung released display wall prototypes and products of large-size Mini LED (the size is about 60~100 μm). In China, research focuses on GaN epitaxial materials, active substrate materials and special display materials for mass transfer and color display. Global representative panel manufacturers in quantum dot sector are Samsung Display (SDC), TCL CSOT, etc. Terminal companies include Samsung, TCL, etc. Quantum dot technology now is mainly used for big LCD, and the application of small size still takes time.
Quantum dot display technology: With the maturity of quantum dot technology, a new generation of display devices based on quantum dot (QD) materials, such as QLED, QD-OLED, has become the hottest display products.
Compared with LCD and OLED screens, QLED shows fuller colors, higher layering, higher brightness. It is 95% close to natural light and broadband continuous spectrum and has high-level color purity. At present, related patents of quantum dot display are mainly held by Nanosys. It holds more than 300 related patents, and Samsung Electronics is one of the company's main investors. The world's three major quantum dot material manufacturers Nanoco, Nanosys and QD Vision lead the industry in terms of technology research and technological achievements. As for South Korea's technology research and development, Samsung Electronics Corporation acts as the core and collaborates with Seoul National University, Korea Science and Technology. In 2016, Samsung Electronics acquired QD Vision. In the sector of quantum dot light-emitting diode, China’s TCL CSOT, BOE, Longteng Optoelectronics and other enterprises have also participated in R&D and production.
Laser display technology: laser display is one of the important directions for the iteration and update in the display industry, but now it has only a small number of applications in the high-end display market. To occupy markets in other fields, a suitable entry point is needed.
Laser display is one of the important directions for iteration and renewal in the display industry. Laser display is one of the important directions for iteration and update in the display industry. Technologically, it mainly uses R, G, B three primary color lasers as the display light source. They are respectively expanded, uniformly distributed, and decohered before being incident on the corresponding light valve. The display image is obtained through image modulation, projection lens, and other processes. Since the laser has three basic characteristics, namely good directionality, good monochromaticity and high brightness, it can achieve the video image display with a wide color gamut, high-definition geometry and color as well as high viewing comfort that "push the limit of human eyes". it is regarded as "a revolution in the history of human vision" by the industry. In addition, the spectral width of the laser display light source (~5nm) can realize the 12-bit color grayscale coding without overlapping and the laser wavelength is controllable to better present true colors and solve color issues. Laser TV eliminated the display screen and achieved the "screenless" transformation of TV. Compared with the LCD or OLED panel production which requires tens of billions of investments, laser TV industry chain is short and will have greater development advantages in the future. However, at this stage, there are still two defects in laser display: first, flashing spots are commonly present."; Second, the dynamic contrast is low, which affects the viewing effect. Therefore, laser display currently only has a small number of applications in the high-end display market, and it is necessary to find a suitable entry point to occupy other markets.