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Apple Said to Shift to Lower Power IGZO Displays for MacBook Pro Later This Year

Apple will shift to indium gallium zinc oxide (IGZO) material for MacBook Pro displays as soon as later this year, according to IHS. The research firm told DigiTimes that Apple may continue to procure MacBook Pro displays based on current amorphous silicon (a-Si) material until the end of the first quarter.

2016_macbook_pro_lineup
The report claims Samsung and Sharp will begin supplying IGZO panels to Apple as soon as mid-2017. Sharp began mass production of IGZO displays in 2012, but evidence points towards Apple only using the material in iPads so far. A rumor claiming the first IGZO MacBooks would launch by 2014 proved to be inaccurate.

IGZO is a semiconducting material that has forty times more electron mobility than the standard a-Si used as the active layer of an LCD screen, allowing for less power consumption, improved touch sensitivity, and increased pixel density, which could pave the way for higher resolution displays.

DisplayMate president Raymond Soneira told us IGZO can also result in "significantly higher brightness," but the material costs "considerably more" to manufacture. Production and yield issues have slowed the adoption of IGZO, but the material is now showing up in more products such as LG's new OLED TVs.

"Sometimes IGZO is simply referred to as Metal Oxide," he added. "The higher the PPI and the wider the Color Gamut (like DCI-P3 for the new MacBook Pro) the greater the benefits of IGZO over a-Si, particularly for LCDs."

The glass edge and backplane circuitry of IGZO displays can also be made smaller, possibly leading to a thinner MacBook Pro. However, such a design change is less likely this year given Apple just redesigned the notebook in 2016 for the first time in four years. Apple's interest likely lies in the power savings.

The original iPad Air's overall size and battery were reduced by around 25% compared to the previous model, and analysis suggested the tablet's new IGZO display made that possible. However, a smaller MacBook Pro battery would likely be perceived negatively following battery life complaints on 2016 models.

Given the timeline, Apple's switch to IGZO displays may be planned for the next-generation MacBook Pro. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said new MacBook Pro models will launch in the second half of 2017, possibly with slightly faster Kaby Lake processors unveiled this week.

IHS estimates Apple will order 9.7 million MacBook Pro display panels in 2017, an increase from 8.8 million units in 2016.

Related Roundup: MacBook Pro
Tags: IGZO, IHS
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Pro (Neutral)


Top Rated Comments

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7 weeks ago
That's great......Apple can make the Mac thinner.......:eek:
Rating: 35 Votes
7 weeks ago
Leave only one USB-c port, make it 40% thinner, introduce external keyboard (innovation!), cut out the internal one, slap an additional 500$ price tag to the mix, call it pro, say it's courage, and call it a day. Weeeee...
Rating: 31 Votes
7 weeks ago

The glass edge and backplane circuitry of IGZO displays can also be made smaller, possibly leading to a thinner MacBook Pro.


Thank goodness! I nearly strained myself while dangling the 2016 MBP from my pinky for eight hours. I'd prefer to be able to go for nine full hours.
Rating: 29 Votes
7 weeks ago

dongle hub.


Forgetting the absurdity of the incorrect stupid cliched repetitive dongle posts for a minute (you don't need them, just get the improved cables), when did we all start using the world dongle incorrectly? A dongle was alway an end device, a software protection key, a USB memory stick, a wifi dongle, a 4g dongle, a 3g dongle. A dongle has never been an adapter let alone a hub...
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slightly faster Kaby Lake processors unveiled this week

Very slightly. The reviews are not very kind with the i7 Kaby Lake... it's a "micro-tick" upgrade at best.


And it doesn't even provide support for DDR4L, now that's a fail.
Rating: 28 Votes
7 weeks ago

That's great......Apple can make the Mac thinner.......:eek:


Sighh.... that is sadly true. If they care so much about battery life, make a little thicker for more battery capacity or more ports. But they will relegate the MacBook Pro to the thinnest and sexiest dongle hub.
Rating: 15 Votes
7 weeks ago
A thinner MacBook Pro....

One of many reasons why Cook just got $1.5 mil pay cut. He just doesn't get it. The pro community doesn't want a device that is paper thin. They don't want a gimmicky touch bar. They don't want to wait around for 4 years for some supposedly "Pro" desktop that doesn't even remotely come close to being a pro machine.

They want power, they want all the ports they need, they want expandability & they want the pro software to go with them, nothing of which Apple's current Mac lineup provides and are some of the factors why Apple's pro customers are giving Apple the finger and saying "Adios".
Rating: 13 Votes
7 weeks ago

Based on all the rumored updates with new Kaby Lake Processors, IGZO Glass and who knows what else, I should return my 2016 MacBook Pro while I still can.


No way dude, wait until 2018 since there will be an even better MacBook Pro.

Actually scratch that, I hear 2019 is where it's at.
Rating: 12 Votes
7 weeks ago

This, along with the new battery structure and better efficiency, will solve battery life issues but it probably won't be able to compete with the battery life of newer Windows notebooks.


The battery life is really not that bad. And by not that bad, I mean it's actually pretty great considering the intensity of the display.

The whining on these forums is pretty disastrous. I've been running off a 13" 2012 MacBook Air since… well, since 2012. It served me fantastically, but the display was getting a bit splotchy. I just bought a decked out 15" 2016 MBP. It takes a few days to settle. iCloud, Mail, Photos, Spotlight, Messages, iTunes, Time Machine… all this background **** running basically nonstop for days. After that, battery life is a good 8+ hours. The display is incredible. I don't even know what to do with it honestly, since my external display is crap by comparison now.

Even the dongles… really not a big deal. I just need one—USB-C to USB-A for a hub. Everything else is a few dollars on Amazon for a new cables (USB-C to DisplayPort, USB-C to USB-MicroB, etc.). Carry an extra USB-C to USB-A adapter in the bag just incase. People make a big deal out of the silliest things.

This "disaster" of a notebook is the best computer I've ever owned. If the battery goes to hell in a year I'll hand it in and get another one, NBD. That's the glory of AppleCare. Maybe I'll get the new display an an extra 30 minutes of battery life.
Rating: 8 Votes
7 weeks ago

Forgetting the absurdity of the incorrect stupid cliched repetitive dongle posts for a minute (you don't need them, just get the improved cables), when did we all start using the world dongle incorrectly? A dongle was alway an end device, a software protection key, a USB memory stick, a wifi dongle, a 4g dongle, a 3g dongle. A dongle has never been an adapter let alone a hub...
[doublepost=1483726698][/doublepost]

And it doesn't even provide support for DDR4L, now that's a fail.


From Wikipedia:
"A dongle is a small piece of hardware that connects to another device to provide it with additional functionality."

From Merriam-Webster Dictionary:
"Definition of dongle: a small device that plugs into a computer and serves as an adapter or as a security measure to enable the use of certain software"
Rating: 7 Votes
7 weeks ago
Cool. More efficient monitor + Kaby lake + better battery (hopefully) = a much better version of 2016's MacBook Pro. Now, if only we can get Apple to swallow their pride and bring back the SD card reader. (No need for USB-A, but the SD card reader is a must!). Oh, and Nvidia graphics. Maybe the 1060? That would be amazing.
Rating: 7 Votes

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