Samsung's new TV trademarks provide clues about its 2021 QLED lineup

Mike Wheatley

Samsung Electronics has been spotted registering various trademarks for marketing terms that provide some big clues as to what it has in store for its 2021 TV lineup.


German tech news site 4KFilme was the first to report that Samsung has trademarked the terms “QLED+” and “QLED Z”, and a later report from FlatPanels HD confirmed that it has also been given the rights to similar terms, including “QLED Neo”, “QLED Platinum”, “Samsung QNED”, “Samsung MicroLED” and “Quantum Matrix”.

Samsung typically applies for trademarks relating to its upcoming TVs around this time of the year. Last year for example, it was revealed that Samsung had trademarked terms such as “Dual LED”, “Zero Bezel” and “Infinity Screen”. Then, just two months later, it announced the launch of its bezel-less Infinity Q950TS 8K TV, plus a range of Dual LED TV models.

We can only speculate as to what Samsung is intending, but there seems to be a good chance the trademarks could be something to do with the new MiniLED LCD TVs that it is rumoured to be launching next year.

MiniLED refers to a more advanced kind of LCD panel that’s able to deliver a wider contrast ratio and much deeper blacks, therefore ensuring more accurate images on screen. MiniLED TVs use a backlight for a light source. But the difference is that those backlights are much smaller than regular LCD TVs, with tens of thousands being used instead of just tens of hundreds. This ensures better control over local dimming, which in turn controls how bright or dim different parts of the screen can go. Theoretically then, MiniLED with its superior local dimming can produce images with more precise shading and colour reproduction.

Samsung could well be planning to integrate MiniLED with its QLED displays for some premium TV products next year, using the terms QLED+, QLED Neo and QLED Platinum to market them. If so, the term “Quantum Matrix” might possibly refer to those MiniLED backlights that make them so special.

Another possible theory is that Samsung might launch its first batch of Quantum Dot-OLED TVs. QD-OLED is something that Samsung Display, the company’s subsidiary that makes TV displays, has been working on for a while. However, it remains to be seen if Samsung Electronics will actually sell any QD-OLED TVs itself, as the company itself has reportedly been less than impressed with the technology.

“Samsung MicroLED” does of course seem like a dead giveaway for the company’s planned MicroLED TVs that have self-emissive properties like OLED and can be built to any aspect ratio and pixel density. But if Samsung really does launch a commercial MicroLED TV next year, it would almost certainly be very expensive indeed.

FlatPanels HD adds that Samsung is also exploring the concept of QNED, which refers to a new display technology called Quantum Nano(rod) Emitting Diode, though it says it’s very unlikely to see such a TV launched next year.

One final trademark Samsung has claimed is “Wireless Rear Speaker Compatible”, which suggests that its new TVs might be able to connect wirelessly to additional rear speakers.

In any case it won’t be that long until we find out, as Samsung is expected to announce next year’s TV lineup at the virtual 2021 Consumer Electronics Show in January.