iPhone 12 ProSource: Daniel Bader / Android Central

What you need to know

  • LG Display says it is has reviewed plans to build an additional line for OLED display manufacturing.
  • A new report says this all but confirms previous reports the company plans to further invest in making OLED panels for Apple.

A new report says that LG Display's announcement of plans to invest in another OLED production line confirms it will make more OLED panels for Apple in the future.

From The Elec:

LG Display said on Wednesday that it was reviewing the construction of an additional OLED production line for IT and mobile applications.

The statement is effectively a confirmation that the company plans to restart spending on the E6-3, which will manufacture OLED panels for Apple.

LG Display CFO Suh Dong-hee reportedly said during the company's earnings call that company has substantially reviewed plans to build an additional OLED line. On Wednesday LG stated:

In the second half of this year, LG Display will continue to seek to increase profit by continuing to strengthen its position within the super large-size TV market and expand its position within the mid-size premium market. At the same time, the company will identify applications where OLED can unleash its distinct inherent value, and develop them into high-margin, high-growth segments. Through this, the company is expected to rapidly increase its profitability. It aims to turn its large-size OLED business in the black in the second half of this year while pursuing an operating margin in a mid-single-digit range from 2022, and eventually, a double-digit range in the mid to long run.

The Elec reports that LG's new line will add capacity for 15,000 substrates a month, and has previously reported that the line would be dedicated to production for Apple, increasing iPhone OLED panel production by 50%.

According to reports, Apple has asked suppliers for 90 million units of its upcoming iPhone 13 by the end of the year. The Elec has previously stated that Apple wants LG Display to supply more panels as a result of this increase in orders, which is up on the reported 75 million units of iPhone 12 it asked for last year. The new line, dubbed E6-3, likely won't be operational until sometime next year. As The Elec has previously noted, LG had halted spending on this line back in 2017 because it didn't get Apple's approval to supply OLED panels, however, it re-entered the supply chain in 2018 and supplied 25 million OLED units to Apple last year.

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At least some of Apple's new iPhone 13 models will reportedly feature LTPO displays, using the same technology as the Apple Watch to provide an always-on display and a variable refresh rate that should enable 120Hz displays for Apple's 'Pro' iPhone lineup. That would make for a big display upgrade over the iPhone 12, currently the best iPhone Apple offers.