Samsung Begins Mass Production of 14-Inch and 16-Inch OLED Displays That Apple Might Use for 2022 MacBook Pro
Samsung Display today announced that it has started mass production of 14-inch and 16-inch OLED displays for laptops, and a key feature of the panels is support for up to a 90Hz refresh rate for smoother appearing content.
Samsung Display said it has been supplying the OLED panels to global manufacturers, including ASUS, Lenovo, Dell, HP, and Samsung Electronics, for use in laptops, including ASUS's recently announced Zenbook and Vivobook Pro laptops. Apple was not mentioned as being a customer, but Korean website The Elec last month reported that Samsung Display was preparing its production lines for future MacBooks with OLED displays, and DigiTimes has said Apple plans to launch a 16-inch MacBook Pro with an OLED display in 2022.
MacBook Pro models currently use LCD displays with a 60Hz refresh rate, so the potential move to OLED and 90Hz would be significant. OLED benefits include higher brightness, improved contrast, deeper blacks, and more, while a 90Hz refresh rate would result in smoother appearing content while watching videos, gaming, and scrolling text.
In the meantime, rumors suggest Apple will soon release redesigned 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models with LCD displays, but with mini-LED backlighting, which offers many of the same advantages as OLED. Given that large OLED displays are expensive to manufacture, perhaps Apple will eventually offer both mini-LED and OLED versions of the MacBook Pro, with the latter technology reserved for higher-priced configurations.
Apple already uses OLED displays for the Apple Watch and several iPhone models, including the entire iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 lineups. Samsung is reportedly the exclusive supplier of OLED displays for the iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro Max.