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Apple is looking to adopt Samsung’s touch-integrated OLED display in its future flagship iPhones. Apple has so far used a separate touch layer on top of iPhone displays but it is now looking to change that. The switch will allow Apple to design thinner and lighter iPhones.

What’s interesting is that this potential move from Apple has led Chinese OLED maker BOE to build production lines for OLED displays with integrated touch layer as well which have been internally dubbed as Y-Octa. Samsung has so far been the only display maker to offer OLED display panels with an integrated touch panel.

BOE is looking to challenge that as it is setting up a production line by refurbishing some of its existing lines at the B11 plant in Mianyang, Sichuan. The company is looking to win some OLED panel orders from Apple with this move.

“Having seen Samsung create a highly profitable market with the product incorporating the touch sensor, BOE has decided to follow suit,” said an industry source. “The lines are now being built in Mianyang as far as I know.”

Last year, BOE ran a project called L6 to win OLED panel orders from Apple. While that did not happen, it did manage to win orders from Huawei for its flagship smartphone. This year, BOE is going ahead with its L7 project with the aim to once again provide OLED panels to Apple.

Apple has so far exclusively sourced OLED panels from Samsung despite rumors of LG also joining the OLED supply chain every year.

Our Take 

What the report does not mention is just how good BOE OLED panels are. While BOE did manage to supply OLED panels to Huawei for its Mate 20 series, the panel’s power consumption left a lot to be desired. Compared to OLED panels from Samsung, BOE’s OLED panel had an absurdly high power requirement and even then, its performance was not as good as the OLED panel on the Galaxy S9 or Note 9.

For BOE to supply OLED panels to Apple, it needs to up the quality of its panel significantly which is no easy task as despite being the market leader, Samsung continues to improve its OLED panels at a rapid pace.

[Via The Investor]

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