A new report claims that LG Display would be supplying OLED panels for the iPhone X Plus this year. Apple will reportedly be unveiling three new iPhones this year: a 2018 variant of the iPhone X with a 5.8-inch display, a 6.5-inch iPhone X Plus, and a 6.1-inch variant with an LCD display.
Today’s report claims that LG Display would be making over 15 million OLED panels for the iPhone X Plus in 2018. The company has been setting up OLED factories in order to win a potential order from Apple and other OEMs, with Apple and Google reportedly investing billions of dollars in the company to improve its OLED production capability.
However, even if LG Display manages to substantially improve its OLED production, the quality of its panel would still remain a cause of concern. The Google Pixel 2 XL was the only notable smartphone from last year to make use of LG’s OLED panels and it was widely criticised for its poor display. For the iPhone X, Apple sourced all the 5.8-inch OLED panels from Samsung itself. The Korean company currently dominates the OLED market for smartphones with over 95 percent of the market share. Its technology is also far ahead of other companies who are still struggling to produce OLED panels in substantial quantities.
Apple likes to keep its supply chain diversified and does not like to rely on a single supplier for a key component. Thus, it is unsurprising that the company is aggressively looking for an alternate OLED supplier who could supply it with OLED panels along with Samsung for its 2018 iPhones. While today’s report does claim that LG would be supplying Apple with OLED panels for the iPhone X Plus, we still need to take a wait and watch approach on this front. While LG Display might just be able to produce OLED panels in substantial quantity by Q3 of this year, it would also need to ensure that the quality and performance of its panels are similar to that of Samsung which would be no easy feat to match.
However, by at least trying to set up LG Display as a viable competitor to Samsung Display, Apple at least hope it would be in a position to negotiate a better deal with Samsung’s display arm for OLED panels for the 2018 iPhone X.
[Via Financial Times]