Chinese display giant BOE has set a target to manufacture OLED panels for iPhone 15 Pro series next year, TheElec has learned.
It is hoping to achieve this by successfully applying low-temperature polycrystalline oxide (LTPO) technology on the OLED panels it will manufacture at its latest factory B12 at Chongqing, China, sources said.
LTPO technology allows for a 120Hz variable refresh rate on the screen
So far, BOE had only supplied 6.06-inch OLED panels for lower-tier iPhones. It will be supplying the same panel for the standard model in the iPhone 14 series launching in the fall this year.
Apple began using LTPO OLED panels with the Pro line-up on the iPhone 13 series last year. The panels were solely procured from Samsung Display, the world’s largest manufacturer of OLED panels.
The South Korean panel maker is also the sole supplier of the 6.06-inch OLED panel for iPhone 14 Pro that will launch later this year.
For the 6.68-inch iPhone 14 Pro Max, Apple will be procuring OLED panels from Samsung Display and LG Display. Cupertino is planning to apply hole-display technology on the Pro lineup of the iPhone 14 series.
BOE is aggressively expanding its share in Apple’s OLED panel supply chain against South Korean rivals Samsung Display and LG Display.
Apple is expected to ship early-200 million units of OLED iPhones this year __ the Chinese display giant is expected to supply panels for up to 20% of the phones, or 40 million to 50 million units.
Last year, BOE had supplied 15 million to 16 million units of OLED panels for iPhones, much higher than anticipated.
Meanwhile, BOE began phase 1 operations of B12 during the fourth quarter last year.
It manufactured OLED panels for iPhones mostly from its B7 and B11 lines at Sichuan Province so far. The OLED panels for iPhone 14 series will also be manufactured at B11 this year. BOE had only applied low-temperature polycyrstalline silicon (LTPS) technology to its OLED panels so far.
For phase 3 of B12, BOE is planning to apply two stack tandem structure to its OLED panels, where it has two emission layers. This increases the panel’s life span. However, it is yet to issue orders for equipment to achieve this.
B12 is BOE’s third Gen 6 (1500x1850mm) flexible OLED panel factory. The factory has three phases __ the second phase will go live during the first half of this year while the third phase will begin operation during the second half of the year.
Like B7 and B11, B12 will have a capacity of 48,000 substrates per month once it is completed.