A photo of a prototype laptop featuring the new Samsung UHD OLED 15.6-inch display. Samsung

Today, Samsung Display announced the launch of a new UHD OLED 15.6-inch display for laptops. Samsung refers to the display as a “world’s first,” due to there being no 15.6-inch laptops yet on the market with UHD OLED panels.

Samsung Display says the new laptop panel will go into mass production beginning sometime in February 2019.

The panels will have a resolution of 3,840 x 2,160 pixels, a brightness level ranging from 0.0005 to 600 nits, and a dynamic contrast ratio of 120,000:1. When you compare an OLED panel to that of an LCD, you can see blacks that are 200 times darker and whites that are twice as bright.

The new display provides a spectrum of 3.4 million colors which is double that of similarly-sized LCD panels. However, OLED panels notoriously require more power than a comparable LCD panel, so all those colors and that high contrast ratio is going to likely come at a cost of shorter battery life.

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Samsung Display, though, is only really concerned about making great displays, so the power consumption is likely an afterthought. It will be up to third-party companies to figure out how to get the most power efficiency out of the unit.

Speaking of which, this UHD OLED panel is obviously geared to the ultra-premium laptop market, and Samsung Display says it will focus on selling the panel “for use in premium notebooks produced by leading manufacturers.” I guess that means we can assume we won’t see this panel in a Samsung laptop at first — and we can expect the laptops it does appear in to be quite pricey.

Samsung isn’t the only company prepping ultra-premium laptop displays for 2019 models. Dell is expected to launch the 2019 edition of the Dell XPS 15 with a 4K OLED panel in March. Being that the Dell XPS 13 and 15 are some of the highest-rated laptops on the market, this Samsung display might give Dell a run for its money.

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