Samsung's world-first transparent micro-LED display is at CES, and it's like a hologram

The Samsung Micro LED a CES with a person's hand behind it, to show the transparency
(Image credit: Future, Lance Ulanoff)

The huge tech trade show known as CES 2024 is officially happening in Las Vegas – and during its First Look event, Samsung has teased the world's first-ever transparent micro-LED display.

Not content with divulging key brightness and screen tech specs for its QD-OLED S95D and a new soundbar range including the Music Frame (a subwoofer that can sit around the artwork on your walls), the South Korean electronics giant has revealed not one, not two, but three different transparent micro-LED displays, all with slightly different designs. 

As first reported by Engadget, two of the units unveiled featured a tinted glass panel, thus making the frameless screen easier to detect (while obscuring potential objects of distraction behind it), while a third appears to be as transparent as regular glass, and also boasts a design devoid of any physical frame.

The transparent Samsung Micro LED at CES 2024, depicting colorful paint splashes

Note the information board clearly visible behind the transparent Micro LED screen (Image credit: Future, Lance Ulanoff)

All of the demo units at the CES reveal were freestanding – and the screen's width, at only a centimeter or so, surely adds to the illusion of a floating screen. Also, thanks to micro-LED's much-touted high pixel density, images seemed "incredibly sharp". 

So far, Samsung has uploaded just one video of the transparent micro-LEDs it unveiled, but our very own Lance Ulanoff was also at the reveal – and he sent additional footage below. 

TechRadar's US Editor in Chief also says it was impressive in person, "though gets a bit grainy and yellow-ish up close."

The tech blog Endgadget stated: "In person, the effect Samsung's transparent micro OLED displays have is hard to describe, as content almost looks like a hologram as it floats in mid-air." Heady stuff.

Samsung also says that these see-through micro-LED displays are less impacted by ambient light, because they have higher brightness compared to transparent OLED panels (take that, LG and the reported big push to transparent OLEDs). 

Pricing? Well, we've seen nothing official yet, but considering that Samsung's inaugural 89-inch micro-LED costs the same price as a small house (and it isn't even transparent), we'd wager we're in for a long wait before the tech becomes anywhere near affordable enough for most of us to own one. 

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Becky Scarrott
Senior Audio Staff Writer

Becky is a senior staff writer at TechRadar (which she has been assured refers to expertise rather than age) focusing on all things audio. Before joining the team, she spent three years at What Hi-Fi? testing and reviewing everything from wallet-friendly wireless earbuds to huge high-end sound systems. Prior to gaining her MA in Journalism in 2018, Becky freelanced as an arts critic alongside a 22-year career as a professional dancer and aerialist – any love of dance starts with a love of music. Becky has previously contributed to Stuff, FourFourTwo and The Stage. When not writing, she can still be found throwing shapes in a dance studio, these days with varying degrees of success.