You still can't buy it, but flexible OLED is one step closer to your living room.
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LG Display has unveiled a new rollable 65-inch UHD OLED panel. While rolling up your TV and stashing it in a drawer is not entirely practical, it's certainly a neat trick, and demonstrates the remarkable pace of innovation that continues to drive the television industry.
Flexible OLEDs aren't new. Samsung sells a number Galaxy smartphones with curved screens. Both LG and Samsung have offered large-screen curved TVs. Both companies even demo'd TVs that could flex—ever so slightly—from straight to curved. Like 3D before it, curved TVs have mostly flopped with consumers, typically costing more money while providing minimal benefit.
This new rollable OLED is a different story, though. First of all, it's not even aimed at consumers yet. LG Display is the company that develops and manufactures panels for commercial and consumer products, including LG-branded TVs. They develop cutting edge technology like this for their partners to spin into consumer products at some point down the road. Just don't expect it in your living room quite yet.
Secondly, if the panel is truly "rollable"—and not just a TV with a little curve to it—the road opens up for a lot of novel applications: roll-up TVs in places with limited space like cars and airplanes, a portable screen for business presentations, TVs that can trace the contours of curved walls. There are a lot of possibilities.
LG Display has not made the available for a hands-on review at the time of this publication. Look for updates if we can get ourselves some time.