As news of a new iPhone 7 and Apple jumping from LCD to OLED screen technology start circulating the web, many have begun linking the two together.
While this switch might be very simple on paper, achieving it is not an easy thing as many think. Reports suggest that Apple will be outsourcing this technology from Samsung and LG, but there are no details on when exactly this partnership will start bearing fruits.
Don’t get too excited
One thing you should stay clear off is getting over-excited about this new possibility. For starters, this is still a rumor and as you know, anything is possible with a rumor. Even if this remains to be true, it won’t be possible for Cupertino to make this shift in time for the release of the 2016’s iPhone 7. The power-efficient displays might never make it to the next S year as well, which leaves 2018 as the only viable possibility for the debut of this technology on iPhones.
At the moment, neither LG nor Samsung have what it takes to supply Apple with OLED screens to full capacity. Based on the current stats, Apple needs more than 200 million panels to satisfy its iPhone market, yet the two companies currently produce panels they only need for their handsets. In fact, combining the current resources of Samsung and LG Display with respect to OLED panel production will still not satisfy Apple’s demand.
As a result, the two South Korean tech giants are reportedly investing up to $12.8 billion, with LG alone accounting for a tune of up to $8.67 billion, in a bid to build an OLED production facility to handle this supply. Of course, this will take time which makes it viable for the debut dates to be pushed to 2018, at least.
But why not 2017?
It is still possible to get the facility ready by 2017 if the companies work hurriedly; however, there is still a problem when it comes to the standard cycle followed by Apple when it comes to rolling out the iPhone.
It is possible Samsung and LG would have produced quite a significant number of OLED panels by this time; however, 2017 happens to be the company’s S year. If this remains to be the case, 2016 is an iPhone 7 year while 2017 is an iPhone 7S or iPhone 7C year. In this case, 2017 will be the year when Apple reuses most of the components introduced in the iPhone 7 models, boosts the chip and makes some minor changes in readiness for 2018’s fresh model.
Why switch to OLED panels?
Many would agree that the iPhone currently has one of the best display screens in the handset world. If this is the case, it defeats the meaning of this switch. However, Apple never sweats for something that has no real benefits to the end user.
The first real benefit that comes with OLED screens over LCD screens is power efficiency. The former aren’t totally backlit like the latter, rather, each pixel is lit just when needed. In this way, you will have a longer-lasting battery unit in cases when the display is unlit or black since there is no power used. Furthermore, the unlit black pixels lead to higher contrast level on displays hence texts and images look a lot brighter while colors look like popping a lot more as well.
OLED technology will also ensure that the screen gets even much thinner as opposed to what LCD technology can manage. With a thinner screen, Apple might get more room for adding improvements to the 3D Touch feature as well as add other components on the next iteration of the iPhone.