LG First with OLED HDTVs, Big, Gorgeous and Expensive at 55-Inches For $10K

Display makers have been working to march consumers into the OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) Promised Land for several years now, and it looks like LG Electronics is finally ready to kick things off. The Korean electronics company has begun accepting pre-orders for its "eagerly-awaited" 55-inch OLED TV set (55EM9700), albeit only in South Korea and for a barrel full of pretty pennies, and then some.

Over 1,400 LG retail stores in the region are taking orders for the TV, which consumers can buy for 11 million won, or approximately $10,000 in U.S. currency. That's about 10 times the price of some standard model LCD and LED TVs, though if you ask LG, the company will tell you it's worth every cent.


"We are extremely pleased to be able to make this announcement at the start of the new year because we believe that OLED will usher in a whole new era of home entertainment," said Havis Kwon, President and CEO of LG’s Home Entertainment Company. "Not since color TV was first introduced 60 years ago has there been a more transformational moment. When high definition TV was first introduced 15 years ago, the public’s reaction was ‘wow!’ but when customers see our razor-thin OLED TV for the first time, they’re left speechless. That’s a clear indicator as any that OLED TV is much more than just an incremental improvement to current television technology."

From the pictures we've seen, LG's OLED TV is every bit as sexy as it is pricey. The display measures a mere 4 millimeters (0.16 inches) thin and weighs less than 10 kilograms (22 pounds). It sports a four-color pixel system that features a white sub-pixel in conjunction with the conventional red, blue, and green pixels for more vibrant and natural looking images, LG says. And apparently the TV's contrast ratio is "infinite," allowing for optimum contrast levels no matter what the viewing angle is.

LG's OLED TVs will ship out to consumers the first week of February.