Apple plans to move to OLED screens for the iPhone models from 2018, a Japanese publication reported this week. The company has apparently already told suppliers about the move, and LG Display is accordingly increasing capacity, the Nikkei claimed. LG was already said to be planning a new factory in Korea valued at $4.2 billion, but there was no firm indication that the plant was for manufacturing iPhone displays, or even for Apple for that matter.
Apple to adopt OLED for iPhone in 2018
Today, there is only a single Apple product that uses OLED – the Apple Watch. LG is the sole display manufacturer for the product at the moment.
Nikkei says that LG will be joined by other companies such as Samsung, as they are able to more reliably produce OLED displays in sufficient quantities, as well as the fact that LG may not have the capacity to meet demand for all iPhone models. Samsung has already manufactured parts for Apple, notably including LCDs, as well as chip fabrication.
The article in Nikkei also speculates that LG’s limits may force Apple to use both OLED and LCD screens in the iPhone, but that’s highly doubtful as the company usually keeps technology consistent across its products. The iPhone 6s and the larger iPhone 6s Plus do use displays with different resolutions (and sizes), but the technology behind them is the same.
OLED screens are flexible, and beat LCDs in terms of power use and their quality. There are downsides however, but Apple is said to be in talks with both display companies to eliminate such issues in the next year or so.
Larry Banks is a keen follower of technology and finance. He has worked for a variety of online publications, writing about a diverse range of topics including mobile networks, patents, and Internet video delivery technologies.