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Samsung Makes Significant Move into Quantum Dot Space

By David Savastano, Editor | December 7, 2016

Acquisition of QD Vision gives company pipeline into materials market.

The battle for the dominant technology for the TV market has been fought for years with liquid crystal display (LCD) leading the way. In recent years, organic light emitting diode (OLED) TVs, led by LG, have made inroads, and Samsung was expected to be part of that movement.
 
However, Samsung has shifted toward quantum dots (QD), another promising display technology, and its QLED (quantum dot light emitting diode) approach is promising. According to Sam Mobile, Samsung recently confirmed that it acquired QD Vision, a QD materials company headquartered in Lexington, MA. Founded in 2004 by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers, QD Vision reported that it has sold more than one million Color IQ optics in the last three years. Details on the transaction were not available.
 
The market for QD televisions is a large one, and is growing fast, according to analysts. Dr. Tony Sun of Lux Research Inc. placed the market at $500 million in 2015, growing 60% CAGR to $5 billion by 2020. Quantum dots are generally thought to offer a wider color gamut at less cost and improved energy efficiency.  The catch is that some QD materials manufacturers use cadmium, which is a heavy metal. Samsung does not use that varierty of QD, though.
 
There is tremendous interest in QD right now. For example, Nanoco Group, a competitor of QD Vision, has agreements in place with Merck and Dow Chemical to manufacture its quantum dot technology.
 
All things considered, acquiring QD Vision makes a lot of sense for Samsung, as the technology giant picks up the intellectual property and materials it needs in its major push to make QLED the industry leader in the lucrative TV market.

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