Samsung's folding screen tech has been stolen and sold to China


29 that has it indicted 11 executives and employees of Gumi-headquartered Toptec and its paper company based in China for leaking details of the 3D lamination manufacturing equipment, which allows an OLED display to be wrapped around the sides, to Samsung's Chinese rivals, including presumably BOE. As a result, the company holds about 95% of the markets share for small and mid-sized OLED panels. That company then sold the tech secrets to the Chinese firms for almost $14 million, according to the prosecutors. The two Korean display makers LG and Samsung have already invested billions of dollars in technology and production, and the market is expected to grow rapidly in the coming years.

Among the indicted, three of them, including Toptec President Bang In-bok, have been arrested while eight others will be investigated without detention.

The nine are accused of leaking Samsung flexible display technology to a Chinese company, selling information pertaining to OLED panels. Some of the leaked data was then allegedly sold to the Chinese companies for 15.5 billion won, which works out to about $13.8 million. This curved OLED edge panel technology is now found on the Galaxy Note 9, and it is bound to come to the Galaxy S10 models early next year. The display is also said to come in Samsung's upcoming smartphone.

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One of next year's most heated battles in the mobile world will be the one between the different foldable smartphones. No information on the two other companies that illegally obtained Samsung's intellectual property was disclosed.

These days, Chinese companies are trying to steal South Korea's technology in various ways.

Reuters, which named the accused company as Toptec, reported that the business has denied any wrongdoing. "Our company will fully cooperate with legal proceedings to find the truth in court." said Toptec which is the company that is accused of stealing the secrets.