Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics — the world’s two largest TV makers are set to intensify their battle in the TV market this year, as they unveiled new TVs using mini light emitting diode (LED) technology, ahead of the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2021.
A Mini LED TV is a liquid crystal display (LCD) TV that uses tiny LED chips that generally range from 100 to 200 micrometers in size for its backlights. The product offers better brightness, higher contrast ratio and lower power consumption compared to conventional LCD TVs with regular LEDs.
The industry observers said this year would be a breakout year for the Mini LED TV market as multiple TV makers would launch such products, reports Yonhap news agency.
“Yearly Mini LED backlight TV shipments are projected to reach 4.4 million units for 2021, a 2 per cent penetration rate in the overall TV market, as brands begin integrating Mini LED backlights into their TVs and continue to improve technologies as well as optimize costs,” said industry research firm ‘TrendForce’.
Of the two South Korean electronic giants, LG first introduced its Mini LED TV on December 29, combining its quantum dot and NanoCell technologies.
The company said its new QNED Mini LED TV lineup comprises 10 models offering both 4K and 8K options with large screen sizes upto 87 inches.
“LG’s innovative Mini LED backlighting comprises up to nearly 30,000 tiny LEDs that produce incredible peak brightness and a contrast ratio of 10,00,000:1,” the company added.
“Thanks to a new panel structure enhanced by LG’s advanced Mini LED backlighting, these TVs deliver a truly immersive viewing experience in the LCD space.”
Samsung threw its hat into the ring on Thursday by introducing the Neo QLED TV that uses Quantum Mini LED.
“Samsung designed the Quantum Mini LED to be 1/40 the height of a conventional LED,” the company said.
“The Quantum Mini LED has incredibly thin micro layers filled with many more LEDs.”
Samsung’s Neo QLED TV also comes with Quantum Matrix technology that provides a 12-bit luminance scale with 4096 steps, which delivers a more precise and immersive viewing experience, and its Neo Quantum Processor that utilises artificial intelligence (AI) upscaling technology for optimised picture quality.
Samsung said the Neo QLED TV would be available in 8K and 4K models and would be launched from the first quarter of the year.
The industry insiders said Samsung and LG’s launch of Mini LED TVs would push the two sides to go head-to-head in the premium TV market.
In recent years, Samsung and LG have been locking horns over QLED TV and OLED TV which are different types of TVs.
LG has been claiming that Samsung’s QLED TV is merely a LCD TV with a backlight panel that has an additional quantum dot (QD) sheet, while Samsung has been pointing out that LG’s OLED TV has a problem of gradual degradation of pixels, also referred to as “burn-in” as the product uses organic material.
The observers said the introduction of the Mini LED TV would help Samsung to defend its status as the world’s top TV vendor until the company rolls out its premium TV sets with next-generation QD-OLED displays.
According to data from market researcher Omdia, Samsung led the global TV market with a share of 33.1 per cent in the third quarter of 2020 in terms of sales revenue. LG was the runner-up with a market share of 16.6 per cent.
“Samsung is hoping to increase the market share of its QLED TVs which are much more cost-competitive than OLED TVs via the integration of Mini LED backlights,” TrendForce said in its recent report.
“Samsung is targeting yearly shipments of more than two million Mini LED TVs next year in anticipation of high market demand.”
For LG, its Mini LED TVs are expected to boost the company’s premium TV sales considering that they would come with more affordable prices than its flagship OLED TV.
“With OLED at the pinnacle of LG’s TV offerings with its self-lit pixels and independent dimming control, the arrival of LG’s QNED Mini LED TVs offers a compelling option for consumers,” LG said.
The industry observers said the Mini LED market is expected to grow sharply over the coming years. According to market tracker Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC), sales of Mini LED TVs are expected to reach nearly 10 million units in 2022 and above 15 million units in 2024.