Apple Supplier Epistar Says Clients Are Working on Mini-LED Products Amid Rumors of Mini-LED iPad and MacBook

Epistar president Chin-Yung Fan said his company's clients are developing notebooks, tablets, smartphones, and monitors with Mini-LED backlighting systems, which will naturally boost demand for Mini-LEDs in the second half of 2020, according to Taiwanese industry publication DigiTimes.

Epistar is an Apple supplier, leading to the possibility that the iPhone maker is one of the unnamed clients working on Mini-LED products, as previously rumored, but Epistar declined to comment on any specific clients.


Last week, noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of investor firm TF International Securities said Apple plans to release an iPad with a Mini-LED display between the fourth quarter of 2020 and the first quarter of 2021, followed by a MacBook with a Mini-LED display in the first or second quarter of 2021.

Kuo said Epistar will be one of Apple's suppliers for those iPad and MacBook models. Epistar is the largest LED manufacturer in Taiwan.

Kuo expects the iPad and MacBook to be positioned at the high end of their respective product lines due to costly Mini-LED display components, suggesting they will be iPad Pro and MacBook Pro models. He previously said the iPad will have a 10-12 inch screen and the MacBook will fall in the 15-17 inch range.

Kuo added that the Mini-LED backlit displays will allow for thinner and lighter product designs, while offering many of the same benefits of OLED displays used on the latest iPhones, including good wide color gamut performance, high contrast and dynamic range, and local dimming for truer blacks.

The future iPad and MacBook displays will each use approximately 10,000 LEDs, compared to 576 in Apple's upcoming Pro Display XDR, according to Kuo. Each LED is said to be very small — below 200 microns in size.


Apple continues to use traditional LCDs across its entire iPad and Mac lineups for now, but if this rumor proves to be accurate, we can expect the first Mini-LED models within the next 12 to 18 months or so. Prices will likely start on the higher side, but the technology should shuffle its way down the lineup over the years.

Related Roundups: iPad Pro, MacBook Pro

Top Rated Comments

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10 months ago


I'd like to see that thinner space savings go to removable/replaceable batteries.

Ain’t gonna happen.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
10 months ago


What is the advantage of mini-LEDs that would make a screen made with them more attractive than the LCD screens we have now?

Higher contrast ratios. Instead of having to backlight the entire screen, if a region of the screen is dark there is no need to light up that portion of the screen. May also reduce power consumption somewhat, if most of the screen is dark.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
10 months ago
I'd like to see that thinner space savings go to removable/replaceable batteries.


Kuo added that the Mini-LED backlit displays will allow for thinner and lighter product designs, while offering many of the same benefits of OLED displays used on the latest iPhones, including good wide color gamut performance, high contrast and dynamic range, and local dimming for truer blacks.

Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
10 months ago


I'd like to see that thinner space savings go to removable/replaceable batteries.

Give it a rest, it's never going to happen.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
10 months ago


What is the advantage of mini-LEDs that would make a screen made with them more attractive than the LCD screens we have now?

It has all the advantages of an LCD and oled but NONE of the disadvantages
So no blacklight bleed, no low contrast ratio, no burn-in, no high consumption no blue pixel wear off etc
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
10 months ago


What is the advantage of mini-LEDs that would make a screen made with them more attractive than the LCD screens we have now?

Read about OLED - then read the shortcomings of OLED, then read about micro-LED, then read about how mini-LED is a cheaper compromise and a more commercial viable alternative for micro-LED and you'll know all you need to know.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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