According to district prosecutors of South Korea’s Suwon region around 11 people were charged last week for stealing technical secrets of tech major Samsung’s under development flexible OLED phone screen technology and selling it to two Chinese companies. The prosecutors have alleged that a supplier of Samsung has leaked the blueprints of its bendable screen technology to a company that it had established. Then the technology was sold away to two Chinese firms for nearly $14 million. The prosecutors have not publicly named the people or firms involved in the theft.
A subsidiary of Samsung said that the revelations surprised and appalled the firm’s promoters as it shows how intense the competition is between rival phone companies for capturing fancy of phone buyers. According to prosecutors Samsung has spent $130 million over a period of six years to create the bendable screen technology that has already created waves in the market when it was teased by company executives at tech shows this year. As demand for expensive phones is waning around the world phone manufacturers are looking for new technologies and features to entice them by upgrading their devices.
Samsung’s bendable screen was hyped as a game changer when it teased the technology at a conference with images of new folding smartphone. According to research firm Canalys, Samsung is the largest smartphone maker in the world and has 20% of world’s global market share. Though the investigators have not been able to trace two Chinese individuals involved in the case they have been able to detain three of the 11 people that were indicted in the theft. Interpol has been asked to help find the others and detain them wherever possible. The trial dates have not been set for the case as they are still seeking details about how the theft was conducted to have an iron clad case.