AMOLED vs OLED: Brief Structural Overview and Key Differences (Updated)

The major difference between AMOLED and OLED is the AM(Active Matrix) system. OLED with Active Matrix (AM) is AM-OLED.

Whereas AMOLED has much better display quality than OLED due to an additional layer of TFTs and the use of backplane technology. Let’s see who’s the winner in the AMOLED vs OLED battle.

Over time, technology is developing drastically. The purpose of using Mobiles and Television has changed. They are not limited to making calls and watching programs. Keeping that in mind manufacturers constantly developing and changing the technology used to manufacture consumable electronic gadgets.

Display technology is one of the most vital factors in Mobiles and Television. In this article, we will discuss two display technology AMOLED and OLED.

We will focus on their structure, process of working, efficiency, advantages and disadvantages and key differences between these two displays.

Let’s discuss AMOLED and OLED one by one.



OLED stands for Organic Light Emitting Diode. It is a Television technology that uses the Electroluminescent layer, a thin film of the Organic compound. The organic compound is composed of a series of hydrocarbons that emit light when the voltage is applied.

OLED TV doesn’t require a backlight for illumination, they are self-emitting display. So, they can be thinner, more bright and vibrant and also they consume less power than other displays.

Basic Structure

The basic structure of an OLED is an emissive layer sandwiched between two conductors a Cathode (which injects electrons) and an Anode ( which removes electrons).

Let’s Breakdown an OLED Structure


We will start from the bottom of the image

Substrate: Plastic, glass or metal foil. The base of the OLED.

Anode: Positively charged to inject holes ( absence of electrons ) into the organic layer that make up the OLED device.

Hole Injection Layer(HIL): Deposited on the top of the Anode, this layer receives holes from the Anode and injects them deeper into the device.

Hole Transport Layer(HTL): This layer supports the transport of holes across it so they can reach the emissive layer.

Emissive Layer: The core layer of the device, where light is created, the emissive layer consists of a color defining emitter doped into a host. In this layer electrical energy is directly converted into light.

Blocking Layer: Commonly used to improve OLED technology by confining electrons(charge carriers) to the emissive layer.

Electron Blocking Layer(ETL): Supports the transport of electrons across it so they can reach the emissive layer.

Cathode: Negatively charged to inject electrons into the Organic layers that make up the OLED.

To produce Red, Green, and Blue light to supply full-color images, the two processes are currently being used.

  1. The first pattern is to produce white light in every pixel, and then use a color filter to make Red, Green, and Blue sub-pixels. We can say this process as white OLED with a color filter(CF). And this process is mainly used for High- resolution Television display.
  2.  The second is to pattern Red, Green, and Blue OLED sub-pixels in each pixel of the display. This is mostly used for mobile displays.

Types of OLEDs

  1. FOLEDs: Flexible OLEDs
  2. TOLEDs: Transparent OLEDs
  3. WOLEDs: White OLEDs
  • High Display Quality
  • Extra Backlight Panel is not required. Self- illuminating pixels
  • Response time is much faster than any other display
  • Presents brighter whites and deeper blacks.
  • Blur free and crystal clear images.
  • Short life span.
  • It is not water-resistant, and can easily get damaged by water without protection.
  • Much more expensive compared to other displays.
  • Available only in three sizes 55,65 & 75 inches



It is a type of OLED display. It stands for Active Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode. Keeping the “OLED” section separate we only concentrate on AM(Active Matrix). Because Active Matrix is the main thing in AMOLED display if we understand that then we will know what AM-OLED is.

Active Matrix is an LCD display technology. It uses TFTs(Thin Film Transistors). TFTs are tiny switching transistors and capacitors to control image produced by the display.

The brightness of each pixel is regulated by adjusting the electric charge of the respective capacitors. Each pixel’s color is controlled by modifying the charge of individual capacitors that emits Red, Green and Blue light.

In short Active Matrix indicates the active nature of the capacitors in the display. Active Matrix also is known as TFT and they are interchangeable terms because the display screen uses the matrix of thin-film transistors in their back panel.

It has two TFT layers each with a different function. The first layer is mainly to start and stop the charging of the storage capacitors and the second one is to make smoother charging of capacitors.


It is the basic overview of the AMOLED display. To make it more clear in simple terms we have to go a little bit deep in the term TFT.


The display screen that uses Thin Film Transistors (Device which regulates current or voltage and acts as a gate for electric signal) technology is a high-quality flat panel display(LCDs). This display screen has transistors for each pixel.

Having a transistor for each pixel means it controls the electric current to trigger pixel illumination that illuminates the display to be turned on and off at a faster rate.

To command a particular pixel, the correct row is switched on and a charge is sent down to the correct column.

Whereas other rows are switched off, only the capacitor at the designated pixel receives the charge. In that way, a particular pixel emits RGB light and the brightness is regulated.

  • The Screen Refresh rate is quite faster.
  • It can be used in a variety of display sizes.
  • The viewing angle is much better.
  • Power consumption is significantly less than other displays.
  • The key drawbacks are the degradation of the screen over time.
  • These displays can cause screen burn-in.
  • Very costly compared to other displays.

AMOLED vs OLED Key Differences and who is the winner?

The following are the major differences between AMOLED and OLED according to us.

PRICE:- Winner OLED, the AMOLED display is much costly than the OLED display.

POWER CONSUMPTION :- Winner OLED, AMOLED consumes more power than OLED.

DISPLAY SIZE:- Winner AMOLED, OLED has limitations in display size they only come with big size TV.

CONTRAST RATIO:- Winner OLED, the Contrast ratio is much better than AMOLED.

BLACK LEVEL:- Winner OLED, OLED displays much better and deeper blacks.

REFRESH RATE:- Winner AMOLED, AMOLED has a faster refresh rate than OLED

QUALITY:- Winner AMOLED, AMOLED display quality is much better than OLED.


It is very difficult to make a winner in AMOLED vs OLED. Overall AMOLED and OLED have their own field of expertise but if we calculate in respect of Television we would prefer OLED display because comparing price, overall quality and power consumption OLED stands best, they are cheaper, consumes less power and delivers extraordinary picture quality.

On the other hand AMOLED is much better picture quality than OLED but they are costly and till now there is no confirmed information of proving themselves efficient for a Big Screen TV display.

Whereas AMOLED has much better roots in small screen devices than OLED, they are good for mobiles, tablets. But OLED still incompetent in managing a place in small screen devices due to the limitations with display size.

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Tanmoy Misra found his love for tech early in life when he got his first Nintendo (NES) console. He spent many hours blowing into cartridges to no avail until inspiration struck and he started taking apart and rebuilding anything that didn’t work. After dropping console gaming at the end of high school, Tanmoy entered the world of PC online gaming. His love of gaming and problem-solving soon led him to build his computers. As per expertise, he is an ISF-certified video calibrator and covering AV for a number of publications since 2018.

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