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[Tech Day 2022] Hyper-Data: Silicon Technologies for Dream Display

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The display industry emerged from humble beginnings -- the first projector was first invented about 150 years ago. Now, displays play with our senses. For example, the New York City’s Times Square sports screens so realistic that subjects appear to stand in front of you. With the latest VR technology, you can explore the metaverse and be immersed somewhere else. Recently, Jaeyoul Lee, Executive Vice President, Head of LSI Product & Technology Team, presented on the evolution of display technology as well as how LCD and OLED enable displays to be many sizes and for different applications. This includes displays that fold for smartphones to displays that cover entire walls. “Increasingly, we can interact with these displays in new ways. We use gestures to trigger responses thanks to multi-touch technology. Displays have become a natural part of our lives,” Lee said. “There are many applications for displays, including TVs, smartphones and AR glasses. Plus, different audiences have different needs with differed sizes, resolutions or viewing distances.” Across all these variables there are four things that the immersive display experience needs to have for viewers to enjoy them:
  • No matter how big the screen is, the pixels must not be “felt.” To ensure this, screen resolution has expanded from FHD to 8K.
  • To produce natural movement and smooth transitions, frame rates have quadrupled from 60Hz to 240Hz.
  • Color volume has expanded from 16 million to over 100 million colors.
  • A touch report rate that’s reached 240Hz for a dynamic display experience.
Even with all these advances there is still a gap between what one would see with their own eyes and what’s shown on the screen. To close this gap Lee explained the different areas Samsung is focused on to continue improving displays. Samsung’s Dream Display To create the “Dream Display,” Samsung is focused on 16K display resolution, a frame rate of 480Hz for faster and smoother playback, over 4 trillion color volume to make images vibrant, and a fast touch report rate of 480Hz or higher to prevent delays.
Four requirements to create Samsung's dream display.
Four requirements to create Samsung's dream display.
Four silicon technologies for Samsung's dream display.
Four silicon technologies for Samsung's dream display.
“To achieve this dream display, we first need cutting-edge semiconductor technology. This is grouped into four core areas,” explained Lee. “First, high speed serial interface for accurate and fast transmission of large amounts of display data. Second, high-performance data conversion between analog and digital. Third, resilient touch technology to allow a variety of user experiences. And finally, smart algorithms to help realize better image quality.” High Speed Serial Interface As technology advances the display resolution and frame rate increases, making the amount of video data needed increases significantly. For example, to implement 8K 120Hz with a 10-bit color a data transmission of around 120Gbps is needed. Samsung has created its own interface protocols called USI-T and eRVDS; it was the first in the industry to mass produce the 4Gbps interface for televisions. To help reach the company’s goal for the Dream Display, Samsung has developed a roadmap to help advance interface speeds. Data Conversion Video data is transmitted digitally from SoC. On the other hand, displays are driven by voltage or current signals that are in analog form. Image quality is determined by the accuracy of data conversion technology from digital data to analog data for the display. Lee shared that, “For large OLED panels a special technique for sensing analog current signals and converting them to digital data for panel compensation is becoming the standard. Samsung display driver ICs are equipped with industry leading 10-bit data conversion technology. The Dream Display will have up to 14-bit resolution depending on the application making data conversion in the display driver IC the key technology for enabling this.” Touch Technology For optimal display experiences for things like gaming, displays need to have a fast, seamless and smooth screen transitions in response to fingers or pens touching it. This requires responsive touch sensing technology. “Samsung has developed the world’s first touch controller for flexible displays with a report rate of over 240Hz. This technology supports both touch and active pen on the displays,” Lee shared. “Samsung also has a responsive touch control solution that combines high signal-to-nose-ratio analog front-end circuit with its own smart algorithms to improve touch performance. Samsung’s OLED driver IC and touch sensing technologies combined with its display technology are helping displays reach new standards.” Smart Algorithms Improve Image Quality Samsung uses smart algorithms to create a new picture quality system to prepare for the Dream Display era. Three things Samsung is developing include:
  • Super-resolution technology to convert low resolution images into 8K or higher.
  • Deep color reconstruction to reproduce over one billion colors with exceptional accuracy.
  • Content adaptive enhancements to create optimal image quality and personalized user experiences.
All of these algorithms will be combined with AI technology to build the ideal solution for a Dream Display.
Samsung's Smart Algorithm improves image quality.
Samsung's Smart Algorithm improves image quality.
Low Power Consumption “We’ve covered the four core areas that are essential to creating industry leading displays. One additional functionality is crucial to this technology, otherwise it will be difficult to market or use and that’s low power consumption,” said Lee. “Reducing consumption has always been a challenge. This is especially a priority when we’re talking about mobile devices.” As the resolution and frame rate of flagship smartphones has continued to increase this has improved display quality. This has also led to an increase in display driver IC power consumption. Luckily, Samsung’s low power solutions help reduce IC power growth with low power driving circuits, library and process shrink technology. Industry Leading Display Development Samsung’s low power technology will help the company achieve its Dream Display. The company has already mass-produced the industry’s first driver IC for foldable smartphone displays. The company is also developing touch IC technology for various mobile applications. Samsung’s advanced display technologies will be introduced to the next generation of displays including OLED on Silicon and micro-LEDs.
Samsung System LSI display solutions of mobile, TV, Lap top, and Tablet.
Samsung System LSI display solutions of mobile, TV, Lap top, and Tablet.
“Samsung has remained the leader in the field of display driver IC technology. It’s a position we’re proud to have held for more than 20 years,” Lee said in closing. “As a pioneer of next generation displays, we will continue to provide the world with innovative solutions that will help us develop the display of everyone’s dream.”

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