Late last year, reports suggested that Apple may dump Samsung in favor of Sharp to manufacture the LCD panels for the third generation iPad or Sharp will at least be one of the companies to supply the LCD panels for iPad 3.
It was rumored that Apple and Sharp were working together on IGZO (indium, gallium, zinc) technology for iPad 3 LCD panels to achieve 330 dpi, which would be sufficient for a Retina Display, while not using IPS nor having to include dual-bar LED backlighting. According to experts, this would have allowed Apple to launch iPad 3 with Retina display but without increasing its thickness.
However, Korea’s Electronic Times Internet News now reports that Sharp has failed to meet Apple’s requirement and won’t be supplying LCD panels for iPad 3.
An industry source said on January 9, “LCD manufacturers started mass production and supply of LCD panels for the iPad3 late last year. Samsung Electronics’ LCD business unit was the first to start mass production, and LG Display has participated in mass production with full capacity, beginning this year.” [...]
Sharp has competed with Samsung Electronics and LG Display over the development of display panels for the iPad3, but reportedly failed to pass Apple’s approval process for mass production.
If this report is accurate then Apple would have to fall back on the design, which uses dual-light bar to support iPad 3’s Retina Display. This design change could result in iPad 3 being slightly thicker then iPad 2 as some rumors have suggested.