Apple Taps LG, Samsung For OLED iPhone Displays, Report Claims - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Mobile // Mobile Devices
News
12/30/2015
11:05 AM
50%
50%

Apple Taps LG, Samsung For OLED iPhone Displays, Report Claims

A new report indicates Apple will be turning to some of its smartphone rivals -- LG and Samsung -- to finally make the switch to OLED displays for its iPhones.

Best Mobile Tech Of 2015: Our Top 10 List
Best Mobile Tech Of 2015: Our Top 10 List
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

South Korean electronics giants LG and Samsung may be Apple's rivals in the larger smartphone market, but the iPhone manufacturer is reportedly close to an agreement with the two companies to supply organic light emitting diode (OLED) screens for its next-generation iPhone.

The report in South Korea's Economic Times cited unnamed industry sources who also said LG Display and Samsung will invest close to $13 billion to build out production facilities. LG currently supplies the OLED components for the Apple Watch, but providing display screens for Apple's best-selling product will require much larger capacity.

The advantages to OLED displays versus LCD displays is reduced thickness and improved picture quality. A November article in Japanese publication Nikkei reported that Apple would make the switch over to OLED displays in 2018.

(Image: samsonovs/iStockphoto)

(Image: samsonovs/iStockphoto)

Another advantage to using OLED screens is that they also can be bent and rounded to a certain degree, giving companies greater flexibility when designing devices. Samsung began taking advantage of the flexibility that OLED displays offer with its Galaxy line of smartphones.

The Galaxy Note 5, for example, has a 5.7-inch high resolution quad HD 2560x1440 pixel display with 518 pixels per inch, while the S6 Edge+ has a curved screen OLED display that is manufactured on a flexible plastic material, allowing it to bend around the body of the smartphone.

The report also noted Apple is likely provide some funding to both firms to help with the investments, though Samsung is likely to get bigger volumes from Apple than LG will.

Other smartphone manufacturers have also climbed aboard the OLED bandwagon as well. The Motorola-made Nexus 6, the latest Nexus smartphone currently available, is the third smartphone in the Google Nexus lineup to make use of an OLED display, after the Samsung-made Nexus S and Galaxy Nexus.

The LG G Flex 2 flexible-display smartphone comes with a curved Plastic OLED panel, while the Nokia Lumia 930 makes use of a 5-inch AMOLED panel.

In addition to reaching out to display specialists like LG and Samsung, Apple has built a secret research facility in Taiwan to experiment with and develop next-generation display technology, according to a Dec. 15 report in Bloomberg.

The production lab, located in northern Taiwan, is dedicated to fabricating new display technologies for the iPad and the iPhone. It employs a staff of around 50 people, according to unnamed sources quoted in the article.

[Read more about what people are saying about the iPhone 7.]

A potential OLED display isn't the only rumor circulating around the upcoming iPhone (which won't likely be unveiled until September, let's remember), with a recent report in Japanese tech site Mac Otakara quoting an unnamed but "reliable" source which claimed Apple was getting ready to dump the standard 3.5-mm headphone jack found on smartphones the world over and use the iPhone's Lightning connector dock as the audio output jack as well.

**Elite 100 2016: DEADLINE EXTENDED TO JAN. 15, 2016** There's still time to be a part of the prestigious InformationWeek Elite 100! Submit your company's application by Jan. 15, 2016. You'll find instructions and a submission form here: InformationWeek's Elite 100 2016.

Nathan Eddy is a freelance writer for InformationWeek. He has written for Popular Mechanics, Sales & Marketing Management Magazine, FierceMarkets, and CRN, among others. In 2012 he made his first documentary film, The Absent Column. He currently lives in Berlin. View Full Bio

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
<<   <   Page 2 / 2
tzubair
50%
50%
tzubair,
User Rank: Ninja
12/30/2015 | 10:33:09 PM
Re: new changes for the future.
 

"Current apple users get any product that comes from Apple.  I want to know whether such changes will reflect in getting more people to become new Apple users."

@Pedro: This seems to be a change that's being brought about on the hardware side where the underlying technology will change but the end-product would most probably be the same. I don't see many iPhone users who'd really care about this change. In any case the Apple fanboys will by Apple regardless of whether Apple is getting the hardware from its competition.
SunitaT0
50%
50%
SunitaT0,
User Rank: Ninja
12/30/2015 | 9:42:38 PM
Re: new changes for the future.
Samsung arguably makes the best screens for phones. No wonder Apple wants a piece of this cake too. I think this would make Apple be appreciated more. I really want a brights 500 nits plus brightness iPhone.
SunitaT0
50%
50%
SunitaT0,
User Rank: Ninja
12/30/2015 | 9:39:40 PM
Re: new changes for the future.
@Pedro: if you compare the iPhone 5s with the 6 you would see a major design and hardware change. You can argue that Apple doesn't need a powerful hardware set for its OS efficient. Apple realized that people are getting more and more hardware literate and are frowning hard if they are comparing it to their flagship androids and seeing that it is lagging. So people would continue to buy Apple because they would keep making advancements. The 6S introduced the pressure sensitive menu system. Maybe in 7 or 7s they would make use of the iris scanner like the Lumia 950.
SunitaT0
50%
50%
SunitaT0,
User Rank: Ninja
12/30/2015 | 9:35:27 PM
Re: new changes for the future.
@Nasimson: I too like this idea. But I don't think we will be seeing this feature anytime soon. Not until atleast 2017 or so.
SunitaT0
50%
50%
SunitaT0,
User Rank: Ninja
12/30/2015 | 9:32:25 PM
Re: new changes for the future.
@Melgross: Android is popular because it is hardware scalable and as a result of that it is price scalable as well. And money has to be a major factor because Apple products are considered rare and a luxury because of their recurring higher than market price tags.
melgross
50%
50%
melgross,
User Rank: Ninja
12/30/2015 | 6:54:10 PM
Re: new changes for the future.
Every year, there are a few people who question whether Apple's sales will go up, or down. What will happen in 2016, and what will happen in 2017? We really don't know. But pundits who have predicted a downturn in Apple's smartphone sales have been consistently wrong. So while over 90% of iPhone owners buy another iPhone next time, only 76% of Android owners do. Where are most of those going? Most of those from the iPhone are going to Android, and most of those from Android are going to the iPhone. And it's therefor obvious that not all Apple users buy any Apple product. That's why we do see a small amount of movement away. But it seems as though those who don't use Apple products, and therefor know little about them, don't understand the appeal, though they prefer to assign that to silly reasons.
nasimson
50%
50%
nasimson,
User Rank: Ninja
12/30/2015 | 6:07:43 PM
Re: new changes for the future.
@Pedro: Replacing the 30 year old technology of audio jack with a single cable would be really cool. Although I personally like the audio jack because it's the only cable I need to carry to hear from my laptop, tablet or phone. So a curved iPhone with a single cable, I am sold. I'm sure there are millions out there too.
PedroGonzales
50%
50%
PedroGonzales,
User Rank: Ninja
12/30/2015 | 12:54:09 PM
new changes for the future.
Apple will be making some major changes to their iphones in the future.  Will new users be enticed to get new iphones due to these future changes?  Current apple users get any product that comes from Apple.  I want to know whether such changes will reflect in getting more people to become new Apple users.  
<<   <   Page 2 / 2
Commentary
2021 Outlook: Tackling Cloud Transformation Choices
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  1/4/2021
News
Enterprise IT Leaders Face Two Paths to AI
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  12/23/2020
Slideshows
10 IT Trends to Watch for in 2021
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  12/22/2020
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you.
Slideshows
Flash Poll