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Apple could settle for Chinese OLED supplier next year

Posted August. 23, 2019 09:51,   

Updated August. 23, 2019 09:51


Reports are coming out that Apple could use the flexible OLED screens from BOE, a Chinese display company, for its premium smartphones to be unveiled next year. According to CNBC and Nikkei Asian Review, Apple is “aggressively testing” OLED panels from BOE, and the decision will be made within this year on whether Apple will choose BOE as its OLED supplier, mentioning the American firm’s effort to cut dependence on Samsung.

In fact, Apple has been using Samsung’s flexible OLED panels on its premium-graded smartphones such as the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max. Taking up over 90% of global market share, Samsung Display has practically established a monopoly system in flexible OLED market.

According to IHS Markit, the manufacturing cost of the first iPhone X to be equipped with an OLED screen in 2017 was about 370 U.S. dollars. As the most expensive part of all, OLED display is worth 110 dollars, accounting for almost 30% of the total cost. Media outlets such as Nikkei Asian Review, however, reported that the prices of the OLED panels that BOE has to offer will be about 20% lower than those of Samsung’s.

“If Apple does choose to use BOE’s flexible OLED screens, it should be marked as a turning point of Chinese display industry,” reported foreign media outlets.

Dong-Il Seo dong@donga.com