Apple’s New Taiwanese Lab May Focus on OLED and Micro-LED Display Technology

iPhone-trioTaiwanese website DigiTimes has published a new report corroborating rumors that Apple is developing flexible OLED technology for future devices, including iPhones and iPads, at its newly discovered factory in northern Taiwan.

The report, citing sources within the Taiwanese supply chain, claims Apple has recruited a team of R&D engineers from local companies including AU Optronics and Qualcomm subsidiary SolLink, echoing a Bloomberg report from earlier this week.

Last month, Japanese website Nikkei reported that Apple plans to switch to OLED displays for iPhones starting in 2018. The report said LG Display and Samsung Electronics will likely share a large portion of the OLED panel production, with LG already planning capacity upgrades for high-volume organic light-emitting diode production.

Apple's current LCD supplier Japan Display is also reportedly in negotiations with Apple about securing OLED orders for future iPhones, in an effort to compete with LG and Samsung. The joint venture between Hitachi, Sony and Toshiba reportedly plans to begin mass production of OLED panels in early 2018.

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes Apple will continue using TFT-LCD display technology for iPhones for at least the next three years, lining up with the 2018 timeframe claimed by other reports. Kuo also said Apple manufacturer Foxconn is preparing to invest in advanced TFT-LCD production lines for mass production in 2018.

While multiple reports suggest Apple is moving towards OLED displays for iPhones, including DigiTimes, the Taiwanese website shared a second report claiming Apple may focus on micro-LED technology at its secretive Taiwanese factory. The report does not specify if the technology would be used for iPhones or other future devices.

Micro-LED displays eliminate the need for backlighting unlike traditional LCDs, and allow for improved color gamut in addition to higher resolution. However, the technology suffers from low yields when used in a TFT manufacturing process and therefore is difficult to mass produce. […]

However, it is still too early to know whether Apple plans to use micro-LED displays for existing or new applications. Apple is showing signs of moving toward OLED for most of its small- to medium-size products as early as 2017-2018 based on emerging developments in the display industry.

Apple acquired micro-LED display maker LuxVue Technology in 2014. Back in December of 2013, LuxVue raised $25.2 million in funding to pursue the display technology, and the company also filed several patents on micro-LEDs. At the time, one of LuxVue's investors said the company had "a technical breakthrough in displays."

OLED displays generally have brighter colors and deeper blacks, and no backlight increases power efficiency, but the panels can also have shorter lifespans and higher manufacturing costs compared to LCD technology. Apple has reportedly been "consulting with display makers" about OLED technology to eliminate potential drawbacks.

Samsung's flagship lineup of Galaxy smartphones have long used AMOLED displays, but iPhones have stuck to various LCD technologies since the original model launched in 2007. The first and only Apple product to feature OLED display technology is the Apple Watch, but the 1.5-inch to 1.7-inch screen is only a fraction of the size of the 4.7-inch iPhone 6s and 5.5-inch iPhone 6s Plus.

Top Rated Comments

bobob Avatar
65 months ago

OLED would be amazing if it weren't for the technology's sensitivity to screen burn in.

That's why it's perfect for Android phones - - your screen becomes unreadable at the same time as your system updates run out in 18 months.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
OldSchoolMacGuy Avatar
65 months ago
Truthful headline: We don't know what the new Taiwanese lab does so we're just going to guess
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bobob Avatar
65 months ago

Apple may focus on micro-LED technology at its secretive Taiwanese factory.

What is this? An LED for ants?
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
shanson27 Avatar
65 months ago
MicroLED display is the future !
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
nia820 Avatar
65 months ago

If photography is your thing then AMOLED will be right up your alley. Specifically Samsung's implementation. The phones have 4 display modes. Dynamic - probably the one you're describing as unnatural. Intentionally over saturated to "pop" in stores. Cinema - calibrated for movies. Basic - Most color accurate phone display tested by Displaymate. The one that may interest photographers is Photo mode - uses Adobe RGB broader color gamut instead of standard sRGB.

If Apple goes with OLED I'd wish for something similar, giving users a choice. I seriously doubt it though. Apple typically prefers simplicity for the masses over catering to specific niches.

Don't waste your time making post like this. People on this forum refuse to believe OLED has actually improved since 2011.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Max(IT) Avatar
65 months ago
Considering the drawbacks involved in the use of OLED display, the rumors is very interesting .
I'd like Apple to stay away from OLED technology
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

m1 chip macbook air pro

Kuo: Redesigned MacBooks With Apple Silicon to Launch in Second Half of 2021

Tuesday November 24, 2020 7:53 pm PST by
Apple plans to release additional MacBook models with Apple Silicon in the second half of 2021, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, as part of the company's two-year transition away from Intel processors across its Mac lineup. In a research note today, obtained by MacRumors, Kuo said that these MacBook models will feature a new design. Kuo did not specify which models these will be, but he...
Apple Watc black friday 20 sale feature

Apple Black Friday 2020: Best Apple Watch Deals [Updated]

Wednesday November 25, 2020 4:01 pm PST by
Black Friday sales have begun on a variety of products, including the Apple Watch. There are quite a few deals across the Apple Watch lineup this year, including one of the lowest price we've ever seen the Apple Watch Series 3. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the...
AirPods Pro black friday 20 sale feature 2

Black Friday 2020: AirPods Pro Reach Lowest Price Ever [Updated]

Wednesday November 25, 2020 3:22 pm PST by
Black Friday has kicked off this week, and one of the first major sales for the AirPods Pro is available right now on Walmart. You can find this deal below, along with a few other solid discounts on the regular AirPods. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site...
13 16 inch macbook pro air trio

Reliable Leaker Suggests Redesigned MacBooks in 2021 Will Include Both Apple Silicon and Intel Models

Wednesday November 25, 2020 9:15 am PST by
Reliable leaker known as "L0vetodream" has today suggested on Twitter that redesigned MacBooks coming in the second half of 2021 will include models with both Apple Silicon chips and Intel processors. The brief Tweet came in response to a MacRumors article from earlier today, which outlined a report from Ming-Chi Kuo claiming that Apple plans to release redesigned MacBook models with Apple ...
mac mini macbook pro macbook air

Apple M1 Hands-On Comparison: MacBook Air vs. MacBook Pro vs. Mac Mini

Monday November 23, 2020 3:40 pm PST by
Apple's M1 Macs are out in the wild now, but ahead of the holidays, you might still be trying to figure out which one to pick up, either for yourself or as a gift for someone else. We've got all three of the new Macs available, so we thought we'd give MacRumors readers a hands-on overview of each machine in our latest YouTube video. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. ...
app store christmas icon

Apple Shutting Down App Store Connect From December 23 to December 27

Monday November 23, 2020 10:14 am PST by
Apple shuts down App Store Connect for a week around the holidays each year in an effort to give App Store staff time off from work. This year, App Store Connect will be unavailable from December 23 to December 27. With App Store Connect unavailable, Apple will not accept new apps or app updates, so all pricing changes and new app submissions need to be locked in before those dates for...
iPads black friday 20 sale feature

Apple Black Friday 2020: Best iPad Deals

Tuesday November 24, 2020 8:51 am PST by
Although we're still a few days away from the official launch of Black Friday, we've known for a few weeks that many retailers would be kicking off discounts ahead of November 27. Because of this trend, today we're tracking discounts across Apple's lineup of iPads, including the 10.2-inch iPad and 2020 iPad Pro. More sales are likely to appear as the week progresses, and when they do we'll update ...
Target November Deals 1

Black Friday Spotlight: Target Begins Week-Long Sale With Deals on iPhone 12, Powerbeats Pro, and More

Monday November 23, 2020 8:07 am PST by
We've been tracking early Black Friday deals in our dedicated Black Friday Roundup, and in an effort to prepare our readers for the big shopping event we're highlighting sales store-by-store in the lead-up to November 27. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Target. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running....
new mac mini logicpro screen

M1 Macs Able to Run Up to Six External Displays Using DisplayLink

Tuesday November 24, 2020 6:53 am PST by
It is possible to run up to six external displays from the M1 Mac mini, and five external displays from the M1 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro, with the aid of DisplayPort adapters, according to YouTuber Ruslan Tulupov. This far exceeds Apple's specified limits on external displays with the M1 Macs. Apple's host of new M1 Macs are not capable of supporting as many external displays as their...
2020 apple shopping event

Apple Offering Up to $150 Gift Card With Select Products on Black Friday Through Cyber Monday

Monday November 23, 2020 2:53 am PST by
Apple has announced its annual four-day shopping event, offering customers up to a $150 Apple Store gift card with the purchase of select products between Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the United States. The gift card values in the United States are as follows: $150 for 16-inch MacBook Pro $150 for 21.5-inch iMac $50 for 13-inch MacBook Pro $50 for MacBook Air $50 for iPhone SE,...