CES 2019 gave us hope that laptops with the 'holy grail' of screens are finally coming
- Several laptop makers announced new models at CES 2019 that will come with OLED displays - the "holy grail" of display technology.
- OLED displays are better than traditional laptop LCD displays in several ways.
- Despite being available on TVs for several years so far, OLED display adoption for laptops has been slow, most likely due to the high cost of OLED displays.
LAS VEGAS - OLED displays on laptops made a big comeback at CES 2019, where several new models sporting the superior display technology were announced.
OLED displays are superior to the regular LCD displays that most laptops use in several ways. For one, they produce a perfect black color that doesn't look gray, like most LCD displays. That's because parts of the screen - individual pixels - will actually turn off when displaying a scene with the color black, whereas an LCD display always has a backlight turned on behind the display itself.Since OLED displays don't have backlight behind the display, they're also more power efficient than LCD displays. That translates to better battery life, which is something we've seen with smartphones that come with OLED displays over LCD displays.
OLED displays also produce beautiful contrast between light and dark areas of a scene, making for a striking picture.
One of the most notable laptops of CES 2019 was a prototype model of the new Razer Blade 15 that will come with a 15-inch OLED display. So far, the Razer Blade 15 with an OLED display is still in the works, but Razer said it's planning a 2019 release. There's no details surrounding its potential specs or price tag, either.
HP, Dell, and Lenovo also announced new laptops with OLED displays.
HP's new Spectre X360 15 is expected to become available in March 2019, with pricing details to be announced closer to launch.Dell is releasing three new laptops with OLED displays in March 2019, including a new XPS 15 model and two gaming models - the Alienware m15 and Dell G7.
Lenovo's new Yoga C730 will also sport an OLED screen when it's also released in March 2019.
Laptop makers have been reluctant to adopt OLED displays in the past, as they can easily drive up the cost of a laptop beyond what a buyer is willing to pay. Indeed, OLED displays are expensive for both the laptop maker and the buyer. Most TVs with OLED panels, for example, are significantly more expensive than those with traditional LCD displays.
But it appears at CES 2019 that the price of OLED technology has dropped to a manageable level. Still, while there's no pricing details for the models above, expect them to cost more than similarly-specced laptops with LCD displays.