You've caught a glimpse of these slim beauties during CES 2012, now prepare your bank account for some appreciable damage if you've set your sights on LG's 55-inch OLED (organic light-emitting diode) TV. They are rumored to be going at US$8,000 apiece according to the Maeil Business Newspaper. In league with its prodigious price-tag, LG is also prepping their slim screens for a red carpet launch during the Cannes film festival in May 2012. The glitzy festival will run from May 16th to the 27th.
It appears that LG has decided to spring their ultra-thin screens two months ahead of schedule, since the launch was initially planned to coincide with the London 2012 Olympics in July. Our best guess is that the South Koreans are probably keen to push their OLED displays out into the market before their rivals do (read: Samsung). For that matter, Sony, who launched their XEL-1 OLED TV in 2008, is effectively out of the OLED race after the Daily Yomiuri Online confirmed in January that Sony will be discontinuing production of organic electroluminescence screens for its consumer business. Sony will focus on LCD panels for their consumer line instead.
Essentially, the appeal of OLED displays lies with their superior black-level performance and high-contrast picture detail apart from their deliciously thin profiles, supposedly even more so than competing LCD and plasma televisions. Weighing a mere 7.5kg, the LG 55EM9600 will feature a skinny 4mm depth as well as LG's "4-Color Pixels" technology with red, green, blue, and white sub-pixels, as opposed to a more traditional red, green, and blue OLED pixel architecture.
Although the EM9600 will be unveiled in Europe come May, local AV enthusiasts will probably have to wait till the fourth quarter before one of LG's pricey televisions trickles down here.