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Apple Working on Extending the Lifespan of an OLED Display for Possible use on a Future iPhone

10.4 - Patent Application

1AF 88 - COVER

Last week I posted a report titled "Apple is Considering a Shift in Display Technology for 2017" wherein I pointed to one of the options being AMOLED. I further noted that Apple had dozens of inventions on record focused on improving AMOLED displays. In fact, a single report in May 2014 report pointed to Apple having more than 24 patent applications on this front. Today, two additional OLED related patent applications were published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.


In the May patent report that I reference to above it was specifically noted that one of the reservations Apple had using OLED displays was about 'lifespan.' One of today's two OLED related inventions discusses methods of adjusting OLED displays so as to maintain a desired appearance and to emit light at a desired brightness and/or color so as to prolong the useful life of a display and maintain a desirable display appearance for longer than would otherwise be possible.


Apple further notes that in some embodiments, calibration curves may be employed to adjust the driving strengths of OLEDs or zones, of OLEDs to compensate for ambient light and/or aging effects.


Apple's patent FIG. 8 noted below is a flowchart depicting a method for operating an OLED display to compensate for aging OLEDs; FIG. 9 is a front view of zones across the display of a handheld device.



Apple has made refinements to their previous patent claims covering things such as using an "array of pixels"; photodetectors that are "color-sensitive"; and being able to "adjust pixel brightness."


Patent Credits


Apple most recent patent application titled "Organic Light Emitting Diode Display Having Photodiodes" was filed in 2015 and published today by USPTO. Apple's original granted patent dates back to 2012. Considering that this is a patent application, the timing of such a product to market is unknown at this time.


Apple's second invention relating to OLED displays is titled "Organic Light-Emitting Diode Display with Varying Anode Pitch."


Apple's patent Abstract: An electronic device may include a display having an array of organic light-emitting diode display pixels including red, green, and blue pixels. Anodes in the pixels of each color may have a variable pitch along a first dimension on a display substrate and a constant pitch along a second dimension on the display substrate that is orthogonal to the first dimension. Anodes in a row of red pixels may have a variable pitch along the row. Anodes in a row of green pixels may have a variable pitch along the row, and anodes in a row of blue pixels may have a variable pitch along the row. The anodes of each different color of pixel may have constant pitches along columns of the array. For more on this second OLED related invention, see patent application 20150287767.


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