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Samsung's 55-Inch OLED TV Rolls Out in 2012; U.S. Launch Date Unknown

The 55-inch Super OLED 3D TV will be available in Korea by the second half of 2012.

Samsung has shed more light on its plans for OLED HDTVs, saying it hopes to have a 55-inch "Super" OLED 3D TV available in Korea by the second half of 2012. It's not clear when a Samsung-branded OLED TV would hit the U.S. During a press conference in Seoul, a company executive said it would take two to three years before OLEDs were widely available, according to the Associated Press.

In January, Samsung said its 55-inch OLED TV would be available worldwide in 2012. The set is expected to be priced around $9,000 for its Korean launch.

Shades of CES

Samsung first debuted its 55-inch OLED TV during CES in January, promising a TV that produced deeper contrasts and finer detail than typical OLED displays. Samsung's technology relies on self-emitting RGB sub-pixels placed directly on the display to achieve what it claims are more vivid images. The new television will also feature voice and gesture control, a dual-core processor, and Smart Hub media integration.

Next-generation display technology is a big issue for manufacturers racing to figure out how to impress consumers with dazzling new high-priced TVs as conventional LCD technology becomes cheaper.

LG also has a 55-inch OLED 3D TV that made headlines during CES. PCWorld's Tim Moynihan called it "probably the best TV I've ever seen." There was some speculation that LG's OLED set would land in Europe in May for $8,000, but the Associated Press reported that LG plans to release its OLED TV during the last three months of 2012.

Sony is also working on a new display technology called Crystal LED, another hot topic during CES. Sony claims Crystal LED displays have 3.5 times higher picture contras and 1.4 times richer colors. Unlike LG and Samsung, however, Sony's new display tech is currently in the prototype phase with no announced plans for a commercial rollout. But that could change soon. Sony in April said that as part of its corporate overhaul under new CEO Kazuo Hira, the company would concentrate on Crystal LED and OLED display technologies.

Samsung is expected to provide more details about its Super OLED TV during the IFA trade show in Berlin that kicks off Aug. 31, according to SlashGear.

Connect with Ian Paul (@ianpaul) on Twitter and Google+, and with Today@PCWorld on Twitter for the latest tech news and analysis.

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