In view of its maturity and low-cost, the amorphous silicon (a-Si) technology is an attractive candidate for active matrix organic light emitting diode (AMOLED) display backplanes on flexible substrates. However, the a-Si material comes with significant intrinsic shortcomings related to speed (mobility) and stability of operation, requiring novel threshold-voltage-shift (ΔVT) compensated thin-film transistor (TFT) pixel circuits and architectures to enable stable OLED operation. But given the dramatic progress in efficiency of OLED materials over recent years, the drive current requirement has been significantly lowered, thus relaxing the constraints on a-Si TFTs. For compatibility to plastic substrates, the a-Si TFT process temperature must be reduced from the conventional 300°C to ∼150°C or below, which tends to compromise the integrity of thin- film materials and device performance. Hence, optimizing the TFT process for high device performance with limited thermal budget is a necessary step towards flexible AMOLEDs with a-Si backplanes. This paper reviews the design and process challenges, and specifically examines the performance of TFTs and ΔVT-compensated integrated pixel driver circuits on plastic substrates with respect to current driving ability and long term stability. More importantly, lifetime tests of circuit degradation behaviour over extended time periods demonstrate highly stable drive currents and its ability to meet commercial standards.