LG Display Co Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:LPL) (KRX:034220) (FRA:LGA) unveiled its latest innovation in display technology today — an 18-inch flexible display that can be rolled into a thin cylinder. The company and analysts are hailing the announcement as a major advancement in the development of light-weight, flexible TVs and monitors.

LG Flexible Displays

The company said the flexible display does not use plastic, but rather the panel is produced from a “high molecular substance-based polyime film”. The new display is based on OLED technology, a system that makes it possible to show images in richer, more vivid colors.

South Korean LG said on Friday that the flexible display has a resolution of 1200 pixels by 810 pixels and will still function when it is rolled up.

That resolution figures does fall within the range of high-definition television, the images on the flexible display will not appear as sharp as the latest flat-panel televisions ad monitors with ultra-high definition.

LG Display Co Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:LPL) (KRX:034220) (FRA:LGA) claims the new technology is a major advance, saying the diameter of the flexible display is just 6 centimeters (2.4 inches). This means LG could theoretically produce TVs  larger than 50 inches diagonally that can be rolled up.

LG also unveiled a semi-opaque display

In a related development, LG Display Co Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:LPL) (KRX:034220) (FRA:LGA) also announced it had developed a semi-opaque display. The firm decided to call it a transparent display as its transparency has significantly improved from earlier technologies.

You can see hands through the display in the image LG provided for the press conference. An LG Display spokesman explained you can also view images on the transparent display from both the front and the back.

Statements from LG

LG Display Co Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:LPL) (KRX:034220) (FRA:LGA) stated that that it hopes to be able to combine the two new technologies and launch a TV that’s both rollable and transparent by 2017. Byung Kang, senior vice president of LG, said, “We are confident that by 2017 we will successfully develop an Ultra HD flexible and transparent OLED panel of more than 60 inches, which will have transmittance of more than 40% and a curvature radius of 100R”.

Head of corporate PR Jean Lee took a more conservative note, saying a good bit of work needs to be done before the product can be sold to the public. “We expect that it should take time to see the products in market because all related components should also be fully ready.”