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Talking about the business logic of display technology
Jul 21, 2017

2016 is Display is full of imagination and suspense of the year, this year's LCD heart is particularly calm, first "iPhone flower OLED" volume of the storm, small size LCD supply chain began to be dangerous; A light of the plan, the QLED from the academic concept of dial aside, became a commercial marketing "Naming Game", no matter how escort how to crack, photoluminescence and electroluminescence has long been stirred into a ball, consumers are still fog In the flower, and "QD", "OLED" these two flowers, like it or not, has become the flagship TV technology line of the two camps.


LCD is not only the technical line of the dispute, a deeper meaning, is the dwarf of business image.


LCD image has been precipitated for ten years, as early as the industry default to "now", in order to give technology products "futuristic", "technical iteration" to extend the industry energy, and then in exchange for more flexible pricing room, Samsung deliberately QLED and LCD segmentation, naturally not a beautiful misunderstanding, LG and Samsung two Korean brands, a piano, a singing, while expansion plant, off the factory, selling equipment, LCD even stand in the defender's throne, but in the Folk is sung into a yellow flower, those who have a unique love for the LCD, mobile phone brand, in the high-end market, the lack of high-tech high-tech synonyms, if not follow and no means of counter, the situation will be very passive, Trapped in the parity market price line.

QDEF is a quantum dot to enter the show party tickets, electroluminescence QLED is worthy of sustainable vision, the final or can make the quantum point really out of the LCD, maybe then look back, past the name of the dispute is only a touch of industry history Moaning, after all, Samsung is not the first time playing with the display of the name, and in 2009 Samsung has large-scale "LED TV" banner, and LED only spent three years swept, has become the mainstream LCD backlight, even so, LCD is still LCD, LED backlight or backlight, no who leather who's life, LED has not been seen as an alternative to LCD technology.

Or, no yet


                 PlayNitride Micro LED Display

Originally just "wolf" story, but this time, the wolf really came.


In addition to the "OLED", "QLED", there is another "Micro LED" in the same diode industry, Micro LED in the debut in 2012 after four years, the story of the past year in the media Of the powerful rendering, has long been showing the story of familiar circles, Micro LED once again broken out of the stone, has been relying on the different king of the past style, as if ready to show the main battlefield technology. And 2016 years out of the sword of King Arthur, not Sony, nor is Taiwan's industry alliance, but, or the consumer electronics legendary giant --- Apple.

Micro LED focus, immediately lead to positive and negative poles of the waves, there are over-optimistic dreamers, there are strong negative questioners, both ends of the spectrum, may come from the different positions of technical competition, may be located in different parts of the supply chain , More importantly, the "extreme value of speech" can bring exposure and click rate, and industry, media, financial markets will always need the subject matter, Micro LED and consumer electronics link provides a new large canvas, So that each of the words, can enjoy the canvas on the canvas, leaving a huge imagination.

Micro LED needs the material is existing, but the system and the standard is new, from the front of the epitaxial uniformity, chip selection, electrode design, the middle of the transfer method, Bonding, detection, repair, to the latter part of the optical , Drive, compensation to assembly, each paragraph is a new standard, not only for equipment, materials and integrators is a huge challenge, the specifications between each other design is interlocking, pull the whole body. In the Micro LED world, a small adjustment of key processes can affect upstream and downstream design changes, which greatly increase the cost of communication between participants, but also derived a serious cognitive asymmetry, these factors have extended the technology to promote Of the run-in period.


Moreover, the exclusive technology always want to use the least number of mouth, in exchange for the most ears.


In addition to the NDA between the co-manufacturers, many forerunners think they have mastered the key technology, but also that they solve the core problems, but also hope to show the competitiveness of the premise of confidentiality, to attract Upstream and downstream active strategic cooperation, the favor of potential customers, the continued infusion of funds and media attention, in order to allow all the resources in place, and thus promote business objectives to achieve.

The media has always wanted to expose the information when the material, and for manufacturers, "exposure" with the "media efficiency" and "competitive advantage" is between the Trade-off, "do not say" "Let others say" has become a reasonable strategy after the change, after all, in the commercial nature, pure information sharing is passive, active can be called "public relations strategy."

So, how do you find a plain and objective view from the transposed, polarized message fragments? Let us try to skip the tedious technology, business competition, only "time", "size" two dimensions, the future development of Micro LED, minimalist into the four main melody (to show the starting point, not fully applicable In projection):


         Micro LED development of the main theme

Small size: from cost to killer applications

Small-size display of the application scene, is a close operation and viewing, PPI naturally larger than the large size of the display, which also means that the pixel space is reduced, Micro LED size must be done smaller, the amount of throughput per unit area Will be higher. This is in the manufacturing point of view, is conducive to "transfer efficiency" and "wafer utilization", but not conducive to the transfer and Bonding yield, the smaller the LED chip, the tolerance of the bit tolerance is smaller, the manufacturing environment Particle control, post-test, and brightness, gray-scale control of the difficulty are higher.

Micro LED is limited to the size of the sapphire substrate, to reduce the cross-wafer production variables, the initial need to lock the application of 6 inches below, even if the phone is also limited, but the wafer utilization is too poor, too many pixels, PPI is too high, if the direct lock phone for the first product, will lead to high production threshold, a substantial increase in capital and time costs, which is the iPhone can not directly skip the OLED, the fundamental reason for using Micro LED.

Smaller size, the smallest pixel, PPI is also lower, but also with the market growth of energy smart watch bracelet, Micro LED into the consumer electronics into the best stepping stone, if you do monochrome products, Wafer bonding can also quickly respond to demand , But because of completely unable to highlight the next generation of display technology advantages, only suitable for the initial prototype of the laboratory; and to do full color, we must face large quantities of small chip transfer problems, but also to transfer R, G, B three Color chip, equal to the work area in a unit, to be completed three precise transfer, between each other can not collision and interference.

If Color Conversion is feasible, the quantum dot may be the closest answer, and the color conversion method, so Wafer Bonding once again back to the manufacturing options, in a sense may be a direct jump to the huge transfer of the problem! Of course, the premise is to throw all the problems to the "life" and "pixel" are the challenges of quantum dots.

Taking into account the current transfer yield, and the latter part of the unsolved trivial problem, small size Micro LED products is difficult to achieve mass production within two years (at least impossible this year), especially Micro LED as a challenge technology, not to make exactly the same Products can be favored by the market to solve the chip is too small derivative problem, just to achieve the production cost of the grid, the real winning point, Micro LED is the use of its unique "low pixel area ratio", combined with "huge micro Transfer process ", crash out of the killer of the added value, so that the real debut of the early debut.

The first consumer electronics products come out, Micro LED will be the most critical milestone.


So the public attention of the Micro LED Device, not only to create a favorable rate to be in place, functional design should be in place, which means that waiting time to be longer (think of iphone 8 delay reasons), this period is bound to experience More questioned, the market concerned about the heat subsided, and the media repeatedly posted a new topic of repeated novelty.


Large size: from commercial display to home consumer electronics market

Sony CLEDIS opened the curtain, the display will obviously become Micro LED two years the highest exposure of the product, large size features and small size, the pixel space (from hundreds of micrometers to mm), so no need to obey the chip size Miniature, the size can be between the traditional package LED and Micro LED, and therefore the birth of some emerging terms such as "Mini LED", "Mini Chip", in order to traditional LED (typ: 3mm above) and Micro LED (typ : 50μm below) between the two extremes, and then partition the intermediate products.

In fact, put it bluntly, Micro LED display is the essence of small-pitch display (fine-pitch LED display), or that is a small-angle display of the concept of extension, by chip reduction, packaging to the transformation and transformation of the law, commercial The display has become a micro LED and small spacing concept of the bridge, although there is no way to show the advantages of Micro LED, but conducive to the establishment of the early sea.

Large size display for Micro LED is an obstacle, that is, too large work size lead to "cumulative yield is too low", and "transfer crawl inefficient", imagine from 6 inches below, die and die closely linked (scribe Line may be only 2 ~ 3μm) wafer, batch transported to 60 inches or more, pitch interval large (hundreds of micrometers) of the TFT glass, "selective transfer" of the ability to become a necessary threshold for not wasting material, which makes the transfer Module unit area of the transfer efficiency is poor, to complete the handling of the output size is very large, in order to catch up with the output needs of the panel mill, naturally there are many manufacturing problems to be overcome, the display because of the use of splicing method, After the first volume can be produced, the second hurdle can rely on time to pile out, first enter the market brush sense of existence, increase exposure, and is an ideal strategy.

However, want to Micro LED into TV, NB, Monitor, automotive displays and other applications, there are two different concepts of technical routes: (1) the most compatible with the panel industry process, to ensure that most (about 70%) of the Equipment investment can be inherited, but it is necessary to make the transfer efficiency to meet the output speed of the front and rear stages (thorough input), the use of multi-head transfer module, multi-stroke synchronization of high precision transfer of the machine is necessary; or (2) The rules of the game, the business display of the splicing concept transplanted to the glass plane display, this way, with the size of the elasticity of the application model may be able to completely change the display industry pattern, but also to bypass large-scale transfer equipment development of the high threshold, but the same Have to face a lot of new models of unknown variables and conversion costs.


From "YES or NO" to "How and When".


After reading the above structure and pattern, and then consider the potential and challenges of Micro LED, there may be different views and ideas. Than the debut of the year Micro LED concept (2012 Sony Crystal Display), today's Micro LED, in the years of squatting horse step, a hundred schools of thought contemplated the development of technology, has long silently from the "0 or 1" the feasibility of the problem "Time to overcome the cost of production and yield" point of time.

As for the long-term product line, the order of development, and OLED, LCD competition pattern, is another worthy of in-depth discussion of the topic, and perhaps in a variety of who replace who's extreme assumptions, we can think about more technology and application of export portfolio The possibility of Wearable development space is still very large (AR and VR also belong to wear a broad chain), and Pico projector, car HUD special market, and even has not yet opened the transparent display applications, Micro LED may be the next step , Or the next step of the landscape.

So, Micro LED is still a long way to go? Or we can say:

"Micro LED still has a long way to go

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