Sharp unveiled its move into the organic light-emitting diode (OLED) market on Wednesday with the commercialization of the "AQUOS zero" smartphone in Japan.
Sharp will offer OLED panels in its new smartphones later this year and plans to sell the screens to other manufacturers.
The move comes as the Japanese electronics maker, a major supplier of iPhone liquid crystal display (LCD) screens, continues its recovery after being bought two years ago by Taiwan's Foxconn.
Sharp's OLED smartphones will initially go on sale in Japan, since the company has not yet reached any deals for sales to other smartphone makers.
Sharp has so far invested 57.4 billion yen ($505 million) to produce OLED panels in western Japan, less than a third of the planned 200 billion yen investment that was announced by Foxconn at the time of its acquisition in 2016.
Sharp executives have said a shift from conventional LCD screens to more flexible OLED screens has been slower than expected due to high prices, making the firm cautious about aggressive OLED capacity expansion in the near term.
AQUOS Zero is equipped with a 6.2-inch OLED with a resolution of 2,992 x 1,440 pixels (WQHD + / 19:9). It supports a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio and 100% DCI-P3 color gamut.
Japan Display Inc, another iPhone LCD screen supplier, is also lagging behind Samsung and LG Display in OLED technology. Japan Display plans to start OLED commercial production in 2019, while seeking a partner to help finance the launch of a mass production line.
South Korea's Electronic Times reported earlier this year that Apple has decided to use OLED screens in all three new iPhone models planned for next year, compared to two OLED models this year. The device supports Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos. Its weight is about 146g weight, powered by a 3,000mAh battery and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 SoC, 6GB RAM / 128GB ROM. Taking advantahe of the heat dissipation technology used in AQUOS devices, the smartphone uses two charging ICs and allows usesr to play games while charging their devices.