Manufacturers of OLED-based televisions enjoyed a resurgence in demand atop the premium segments of the global television business in 2020, according to data released this week by market research firm, Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC).

The display analysis firm’s new Quarterly Advanced TV Shipment and Forecast Report, said OLED TV sales from brands including LG, Sony and others saw their share of the premium “Advanced TV” market deteriorate in recent years, but that turned around in the fourth quarter.

DSCC classifies the Premium TV market as models offering advanced display technologies including: White OLED (WOLED), Quantum Dot (QD) Display, QD Enhancement Film (QDEF), Dual Cell LCD and Mini-LED TVs with 4K and 8K resolution.

The report found that in Q4 2020, Samsung increased unit shipments by 26% year over year and maintained its lead position, but lost some share.

At the same time, LG Electronics increased shipments by 47% as its share increased from 14% in Q3 2020 to 17% in Q4 2020. Sony, watched shipments increase by 41% year over year as its unit share recovered to 7%.

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TCL’s, which was the first to introduce 4K MiniLED LCD TVs in 2019 and 2020, saw its Advanced LCD TV shipments increase 146% year over year to take the No. 4 position in Advanced TV units with 4%.

The report said Samsung also leads the industry in revenue share for Advanced TV, but its revenue share dipped below the 50% mark in Q4 2020. This comes after the company enjoyed a massive 55% share in the first quarter of 2020.

LG and Sony were the primary beneficiaries of Samsung’s lost revenue share, DSCC said. LG’s share increased to 25% in the fourth quarter last year achieving its highest level since the first quarter of 2019.

Meanwhile, Sony took the No. 3 spot with 11% share in Q4-2020, its highest share level since 2018.

DSCC said advanced TV shipments in Q4-2020 jumped 32% quart over quarter and by 29% year over year to 4.9 million units. Although the trend in TVs is toward larger sizes, in 2020, DSCC said, the smaller screen sizes of Advanced TVs recorded the biggest gains.

Advanced TV technologies in both LCD and OLED are offered at smaller screen sizes to reach lower price points. Advanced LCD TVs smaller than 49 inches saw a 99% year over year increase in Q4-2020, while in OLED the first shipments of 48 inch models were tabulated in 2020.

DSCC said that in the largest screen sizes, OLED gained at LCD’s expense, with shipments of 77-inch+ OLED models climbing 395% year over year as shipments of LCD models 75 inches and larger declined by 2% year over year.

“As the pandemic kept people locked up, consumers around the world upgraded their homes with Advanced TVs in 2020,” said Bob O’Brien, Co-Founder and Principal Analyst at DSCC. “An increasing share of those consumers chose OLED TVs in Q4 2020. The introduction of 48” OLED TV in 2020 helped broaden the choices available to consumers, and this puts OLED TV makers in a great position for continued growth in 2021.”

“Advanced TV revenues increased by only 3% year over year as price declines combined with a smaller product mix meant that the average price of an advanced TV declined from $1424 in Q4 2019 to $1,139 in Q4 2020,” DSCC said. “Revenues for the most common sizes of Advanced LCD TV, 55 inches and 65 inches, declined by 13% and 18%, respectively.”

Revenues for 77-inch+ OLED increased by 259% year over year, and revenues from 48-inch OLED TVs increased from $0 in Q4-2019 to $118 million in Q4-2020, 5% of all OLED TV revenues, DSCC said.

Overall, OLED TV revenues increased by 29% year over year in part due to growth in sales of 77-inch OLED TV models, in addition to increased OLED model volume increases overall, as the average price of an OLED TV declined by only 5% year on year to $1,639, DSCC found.

In contrast, Advanced LCD TV revenues declined by 10% year over year as the average price of TVs in the category declined 29% year over year to $925.

“As a result, OLED TV revenue share of Advanced TV increased from 35% in Q4 2019 and 37% in Q3 2020 to 43% in Q4 2020,” the DSCC report states.

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By Greg Tarr

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