Apple is largely expected to launch three iPhones this year, with an aggressive pricing strategy in place to lure more customers. Leaks point at a budget 6.1-inch device with a LCD display and no 3D Touch. Another variant is expected to be the iPhone X successor with an OLED display, and the most premium will be the iPhone X Plus variant with a 6.5-inch OLED display. Apple's OLED demand is increasing this year, and the company is looking for ways to not rely solely on Samsung for production of the displays. Now, a new report states that Apple has given a chunk of order to LG for OLED display production.
South Korean publication Korea Times reports that Apple is trying its best to secure a second supplier this time around and it looks to get 3 to 5 million OLED displays from LG. The source is an executive at an LG subcontractor, and he says that Apple will get about 3 to 5 million units from LG this time, and more over the years as LG looks to ramp up its production. This corroborates with last month's report of Apple's efforts in securing LG as a second supplier for OLED panels, however that report suggests that LG will provide2 to 4 million units only.
"Apple wants to expand the partnership with LG into OLEDs from LCDs. However, the key concern is LG has smaller production capacity for OLEDs used in portable gadgets compared to Samsung Display. The quality of the LG V30 display isn't as good as Samsung's OLED display in its Galaxy lineup," the executive said.
With less dependence on Samsung, Apple is looking to get a lucrative price tag for its OLED panels, and reduce the overall price of its iPhone models this year. Both Apple and LG are expected to benefit significantly from the deal. Apple will be able to set a lower price for its iPhone 2018 models, considering it took a hit in overall sales for the iPhone X owing mostly due to its hefty price tag. LG will be able to get a slice of the pie after the iPhone 2018 variants expectedly ship millions of units.
The Cupertino giant is reportedly expected to ship 45 million 6.4-inch iPhone X Plus devices, 30 million 6-inch LCD iPhone devices, and 25 million 5.8-inch OLED iPhone X successor devices. Apple has placed an order of 70 million OLED panels with Samsung Displays, out of which 45 million are of the 6.4-inch model.
Previous reports state that LG Display would be supplying panels for one of the three iPhone variants to launch in 2018. Back in February, Apple is believed to have also been in talks with China's BOE Technology Group for a potential collaboration for iPhone OLED screens.