iPad Pro with MacBookSource: iMore

What you need to know

  • Apple has placed an increased number of orders with LG.
  • It needs iPads, and fast, to cope with surging demand in Asia.
  • LG will supply LCD panels to help Apple cope with a surge in demand.

Apple has placed an urgent order with LG for LCD iPad panels, to help it cope with surging demand in Asia.

As reported by Business Korea, Apple has recently asked for LG to produce LCD panels for the iPad, and fast. Production lines are expected to be "full throttle" by June. Apple had previously cut Q2 orders in anticipation of a lull in market demand due to COVID-19. As the report notes, however, demand has actually surged in Asia as people turn to remote learning, working and communication:

Earlier, Apple cut orders for the second quarter in anticipation of a significant contraction in the general consumer (B2C) market due to the spread of the COVID-19 virus. However, it started to place additional orders as demand for the iPad surged in Asia due to the spread of remote education and telecommuting in Asia, a region that was relatively successful in coping with COVID-19.

The request is highly unusual, as manufacturers normally get orders three months in advance in order to begin sourcing raw materials and supplies. The expedited order highlights just how much demand has increased beyond expectation.

Commenters note that LG will be keen to fulfill Apple's order so as not to lose business to its rivals BOE and Sharp, who also supply Apple with iPad panels.

LG also successfully secured a chunk of orders for the iPhone 12 lineup, and will supply display panels to Apple alongside Samsung.

The news will come as welcome to LG, which posted an operating loss of $290 million in Q1 of 2020.