Recently, according to the latest report released by Bloomberg, LG Display has started producing OLED display panels for the Apple iPhone. The first batch of production may be ready before the September launch of the new generation iPhone. In any case, LG will soon become Apple's second largest supplier of OLED mobile phone screens, but Samsung is the only one.
It is clear that the addition of LG Display will help Apple reduce its dependence on Samsung. At present, the OLED display panel of the Apple iPhone X model is exclusively owned by Samsung. The key point is that Samsung is still the only OLED panel maker capable of meeting Apple's capacity demand for the time being, and there have been reports that Apple's new iPhone in 2018 is still exclusively provided by Samsung.
However, according to Bloomberg's report, although LG Display initially can only supply 2 million to 4 million OLED screens for Apple, which is far less than the iPhone's sales volume, but the output should increase in the next few months, so LG is very likely to Become one of Apple's two new OLED iPhone screen suppliers this year. However, Samsung will still be the main supplier.
As we all know, the OLED screen used on the iPhone X is the most expensive component of the entire device, and because Samsung was the sole supplier in the past, Apple was in a very unfavorable position in bargaining price and could not negotiate too much with Samsung. Of course, even if LG's OLED screen production capacity can meet Apple's requirements, Apple will not consider giving up orders with Samsung. Apple has always been committed to the diversification of suppliers in order to strive for a better cost price for the components of the iPhone.
Jerry Kang, Senior Principal Analyst at IHS Markit, said that for Apple, it is important to have a second OLED screen supplier because it will allow Apple to reduce its reliance on Samsung and gain an advantage in price negotiation. Not only that, this move will also help Apple's iPhone product line accelerate the popularity of OLED screens. In any case, the more suppliers, the more often it means more sufficient production capacity, and the more reasonable or lower cost price.
The Bloomberg report emphasized that although LG has already started producing OLED panels for the iPhone, it is only expected to be used for new iPhones. It is not yet clear whether LG can achieve this goal. At the same time, it is still up to Apple to decide how to handle the delivered goods, because Apple needs to go through two layers of approval. The first batch is expected to be around in July.
This means that if LG wants Apple's new generation of iPhones to use its OLED screens, it must ensure that another batch of shipments are ready in July, ready to be delivered before the iPhone is assembled, rather than lagging behind the production time of the new iPhone. However, LG is more likely to be one of the main suppliers of the iPhone of the generation of 2019, not this year.
Because Apple has extremely high demands on the screen quality of OLEDs, it is difficult for LG to achieve precise specifications that meet both high production capacity and high demand in the short term. LG's OLED screens are not very well-received in the smart phone field and have encountered many post-sales issues. For example, Google's Pixel 2 XL is using LG's OLED screen, but this screen has the obvious problem of color displacement and burn-in. Google's constant complaints in order to calm users, not only the software updates, but also have to extend the warranty. For a year.
Apple is expected to release a new generation of iPhones in September, two of which will use OLED screens, and the other will be a slightly shrinking LCD model at a relatively affordable price. A large number of analysts believe that Apple's main push is still the LCD model, but OLED large-screen models are also expected to become best-selling models.