I heard of a lot horror stories about (AM)OLED displays which have burn in marks after using for only a very short time. A known issue of OLED displays is that they age quite fast (compared to LCDs), particularly blue.

Most horror stories / proof of burn in marks I found are from 2011 or 2012. There are recent articles online which claim that this is still a big issue but they substantiate their claim with rather old photos of the burn in marks, or don't say what device had burn marks, or deal with TVs which are much brighter than, say, smart phones and a bit more prone to wear out.

I picked some random results of a Google search for oled burn in or amoled burn in (these are predominantly smartphone examples because that is where the heaviest use of these displays has been):

Wikipedia says that OLED still has these issues.

The biggest technical problem for OLEDs was the limited lifetime of the organic materials. One 2008 technical report on an OLED TV panel found that "After 1,000 hours the blue luminance degraded by 12%, the red by 7% and the green by 8%." In particular, blue OLEDs historically have had a lifetime of around 14,000 hours to half original brightness (five years at 8 hours a day) when used for flat-panel displays.

But the report is from 2008 and it does not cover tablets, which have much darker displays.

So, it this still an issue?

And can somebody confirm whether OLEDs of "older" displays (older than June 2014), have poor outdoor performance? (Wikipedia claims that recent advances in OLED technology allow some of these displays to surpass LCDs for outdoor performance)

  • I have a 6 years old Samsung Omnia Pro GT-B7610 (released in Q4 2009) and 2 years old Samsung Galaxy Nexus (released in Q4 2011). Both have AMOLED screens. Older one has no burn-ins even though it was heavily used for 4 years. Newer one had burn-ins after first few months, but they didn't get worse since then (or at least they are aging at the same pace as the rest of the screen). – gronostaj Feb 28 '15 at 22:51
  • Comparing outdoor performance with other devices is rather hard because both AMOLEDs and LCDs are often nerfed to avoid burn-ins or color banding. Example: LG Nexus 4 (IPS LCD) has very dull colors and poor contrast. Galaxy Nexus (AMOLED) has purple-brownish greys and reduces contrast for bright screens to prevent burn-ins. Both can be flashed with custom kernels that allow advanced screen tuning, after fixing these problems both screens look very good and have great outdoor performance. Btw, one notable case: HTC Desire had AMOLED and SLCD variants. – gronostaj Feb 28 '15 at 23:21

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