South Korea’s Samsung Display Co. will become the chief screen supplier for Apple Inc.’s upcoming iPhone - to be named iPhone 8 or iPhone X.
According to multiple industry sources Sunday, Samsung Display recently landed on a deal to supply 60 million units of 5-inch organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays for the next-generation iPhones. The order follows the previous one struck between the two firms last year for Samsung Display to provide Apple 100 million units of 5.5-inch OLED screens worth 8 trillion won ($6.96 billion).
Given that a single iPhone model sells around 200 million units, about a whopping 80 percent of total shipments will be fitted in with Samsung Display’s OLED screens. Latest order is expected to worth up to 5 trillion won, according to a source familiar with the matter.
It is the first time that Apple largely relied on one supplier for its darling iPhone series. Its archrival LG Display Co., Japan’s Sharp Corp. and Japan Display Inc. previously supplied screens to Apple. Samsung’s bold, record-high investment in OLED panels last year allowed the firm to be the main supplier for iPhone launched a decade ago.
An OLED is one of the priciest components for a smartphone. It largely replaced liquid crystal displays in smartphone manufacturing thanks to its bendability and flexibility.
Samsung Display, which injected a record high of 10 trillion won to ramp up OLED panel production last year, will need another mega investment this year to keep up with Apple and other clients’ flooding demand.
By Lee Dong-in
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