Sharp says iPhone 5 displays being made for Apple in 'adequate volumes'

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
An executive with LCD maker Sharp has indicated that his company is not having problems supplying displays to Apple for the iPhone 5.

The unnamed Sharp official made the comments at a press briefing in Osaka, Japan, and spoke on condition he would not be identified, according to Reuters. The comments suggest that any earlier issues the company was rumored to have experienced have since passed.

Sharp was previously said to have fallen behind schedule in producing the new in-cell touch panel displays for Apple's iPhone 5. Those screens are reportedly being mass produced at the company's Kameyama plant in central Japan.

Specifically, the new in-cell panels were said to have low production yields at the Sharp plant. An unnamed source who spoke with Reuters speculated that Apple could "sweeten financial incentives to secure an acceleration of production."


iPhone 5


In addition to Sharp, iPhone 5 displays are also being supplied to Apple by LG Display and the newly formed Japan Display Inc., a venture from the LCD operations of Sony and Hitachi.

The new iPhone features a taller 4-inch screen that allows for another row of applications on the device's home screen. The new in-cell touch technology allows the component to be thinner, aiding in the iPhone 5 being both 18 percent thinner and 20 percent lighter than its predecessor.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 26
    galbigalbi Posts: 968member
    Hope that $4.6 Billion loan is worth it.
  • Reply 2 of 26
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    An executive with LCD maker Sharp has indicated that his company is not having problems supplying displays to Apple for the iPhone 5.
    The unnamed Sharp official made the comments at a press briefing in Osaka, Japan, and spoke on condition he would not be identified, <a href="http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/09/28/us-sharp-iphone-idUSBRE88R0I420120928">according to</a> <em>Reuters</em>. The comments suggest that any <a href="http://appleinsider.com/articles/12/08/31/sharp_hits_delays_producing_screens_for_apples_next_iphone___wsj">earlier issues</a> the company was rumored to have experienced have since passed.
    Sharp was previously said to have fallen behind schedule in producing the new in-cell touch panel displays for Apple's iPhone 5. Those screens are reportedly being mass produced at the company's Kameyama plant in central Japan.
    Specifically, the new in-cell panels were said to have low production yields at the Sharp plant. An unnamed source who spoke with <em>Reuters</em> speculated that Apple could "sweeten financial incentives to secure an acceleration of production."

    Wow. That's a lot of garbage in one article.

    First, the executive said that they are being shipped in "adequate volumes". What are adequate volumes? Just enough to keep Apple from cancelling your contract? Enough to meet all of Apple's present and future demands? Enough to limit Apple's production so that their competitors (who probably pay Sharp more money per panel) have a chance? It's a meaningless phrase. Unless you can say that you're meeting Apple's order requirements, you should STFU and spend your energy fixing your problems.

    The suggestion that Apple should sweeten financial incentives is interesting. So there's an insurmountable technical glitch, but if Apple bribes them (oops, 'sweetens financial incentives'), it will magically go away? They have an agreed upon price and delivery schedule. If they are unable to meet the delivery schedule that they agreed to, then Apple shouldn't have to bribe them to catch up. If, OTOH, Apple is asking for more than the agreed-upon number, then incentives might be justified -- but if that were the case, I suspect the entire conversation would have been worded differently since they tied it directly to low yields in Sharp's plant.

    I also like the "we didn't have any problems, but we've fixed the problem" inconsistency, as well.
  • Reply 3 of 26
    Fwiw - I thought the Apple spin machine was pushing their luck claiming the sales numbers could be higher but supply was an issue...

    Because everyone I know who WANTED the iphone5 got one...

    Or is Apple covering itself because Wall Street was looking for 10m sales and Apple only sold 6m?
  • Reply 3 of 26
    Fwiw - I thought the Apple spin machine was pushing their luck claiming the sales numbers could be higher but supply was an issue...

    Because everyone I know who WANTED the iphone5 got one...

    Or is Apple covering itself because Wall Street was looking for 10m sales and Apple only sold 6m?
  • Reply 5 of 26


    Originally Posted by LuxoM3 View Post

    Fwiw - I thought the Apple spin machine was pushing their luck claiming the sales numbers could be higher but supply was an issue...

    Because everyone I know who WANTED the iphone5 got one...

    Or is Apple covering itself because Wall Street was looking for 10m sales and Apple only sold 6m?


     


    Please leave.

  • Reply 6 of 26
    hill60hill60 Posts: 6,992member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Galbi View Post



    Hope that $4.6 Billion loan is worth it.


     


    It's better than paying it to Samsung, actually Samsung could end up paying for quite a lot of it.


     


    Sharp has been fairly innovative, they released the first phone with a camera, although they and other Japanese handset makers were kept out of western markets by a cartel led by Nokia, Motorola and others making excessive licensing demands, it got so bad it lead to the setting of standards based FRAND patents which Google and Samsung are trying their best to destroy now.


     


    At one stage Nokia was threatening to sue Sharp over the GX15 infringing their design patents.


     


    Everything old is new again.

  • Reply 7 of 26
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    luxom3 wrote: »
    Fwiw - I thought the Apple spin machine was pushing their luck claiming the sales numbers could be higher but supply was an issue...
    Because everyone I know who WANTED the iphone5 got one...
    Or is Apple covering itself because Wall Street was looking for 10m sales and Apple only sold 6m?
    I'm sure there's someplace else where your trolling would be more welcome.
  • Reply 8 of 26


    public opinion/shareholder caressing.


     


    'adequate' is equivocal .. If he had said 'we met our commitments', then he would have been stating 'Apple 'supply' problems' is at their end'.


     


    Bottom line, at the CEO level (like head of state), they are talking past each other to the public.

  • Reply 9 of 26


    Word among the Wall Street analysts was that Sharp didn't make their first significant shipment of displays for the 5 until the last week or so (mentioned on CNBC today)....although its good news if their numbers are coming up - "adequate" looks like corporate doublespeak though...


     


    Hopefully the suppliers can get their hands around this and get their yield up.

  • Reply 10 of 26
    lilgto64lilgto64 Posts: 1,147member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by LuxoM3 View Post



    Fwiw - I thought the Apple spin machine was pushing their luck claiming the sales numbers could be higher but supply was an issue...

    Because everyone I know who WANTED the iphone5 got one...

    Or is Apple covering itself because Wall Street was looking for 10m sales and Apple only sold 6m?


     


    FWIW - perhaps I missed something - but I don't recall any statement or indication or unnamed source associated with Apple claiming there was any sort of production volume issue. 


     


    AFAIK - Apple has stated the facts - we took this many pre-orders - we shipped this many units - customer have received this many units, that sort of thing - it is everyone else with an axe to grind or a stock price to manipulate or just plain haters that have been the ones claiming and speculating. There may have been a statement from Apple along the lines of we got more pre-orders than we expected - but that could be spin or could be a huge sigh of relief that their internal worst case scenario was not realized and perhaps even an indication that they aimed low. 


     
  • Reply 11 of 26
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,875member
    I'm concerned about the reason why they were having problems, which we don't know. Was it some manufacturing glitch, or was it a QC issue?

    From the two thorough tests done by Displaymate and Anandtech, this is a remarkable display, and by far the best on on a cell phone. Anand even said that if this were a desktop display he would give it a gold star.

    So if it's a technical production problem, that's ok. They do get fixed. But if its a QC problem, then I would be concerned, because those can come and go.
  • Reply 12 of 26
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,875member
    public opinion/shareholder caressing.

    'adequate' is equivocal .. If he had said 'we met our commitments', then he would have been stating 'Apple 'supply' problems' is at their end'.

    Bottom line, at the CEO level (like head of state), they are talking past each other to the public.

    Adequate is far better than what they were producing earlier, which was nothing.
  • Reply 13 of 26

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by LuxoM3 View Post



    Fwiw - I thought the Apple spin machine was pushing their luck claiming the sales numbers could be higher but supply was an issue...

    Because everyone I know who WANTED the iphone5 got one...

    Or is Apple covering itself because Wall Street was looking for 10m sales and Apple only sold 6m?




    Unless you know 100MM people, your little anecdote means nothing.


     


    Oh it was one analyst that was predicting 10MM sales regardless if Apple can produce that many prior to the roll out. It still sold a record 5MM phones in a weekend (not including many (if not all) preorders. Other vendors would kill for that amount for a month.

  • Reply 14 of 26

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by melgross View Post



    I'm concerned about the reason why they were having problems, which we don't know. Was it some manufacturing glitch, or was it a QC issue?

    From the two thorough tests done by Displaymate and Anandtech, this is a remarkable display, and by far the best on on a cell phone. Anand even said that if this were a desktop display he would give it a gold star.

    So if it's a technical production problem, that's ok. They do get fixed. But if its a QC problem, then I would be concerned, because those can come and go.


    QC problems ARE technical production problems. 

  • Reply 15 of 26

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post





    Wow. That's a lot of garbage in one article.

    First, the executive said that they are being shipped in "adequate volumes". What are adequate volumes? Just enough to keep Apple from cancelling your contract? Enough to meet all of Apple's present and future demands? Enough to limit Apple's production so that their competitors (who probably pay Sharp more money per panel) have a chance? It's a meaningless phrase. Unless you can say that you're meeting Apple's order requirements, you should STFU and spend your energy fixing your problems.

    The suggestion that Apple should sweeten financial incentives is interesting. So there's an insurmountable technical glitch, but if Apple bribes them (oops, 'sweetens financial incentives'), it will magically go away? They have an agreed upon price and delivery schedule. If they are unable to meet the delivery schedule that they agreed to, then Apple shouldn't have to bribe them to catch up. If, OTOH, Apple is asking for more than the agreed-upon number, then incentives might be justified -- but if that were the case, I suspect the entire conversation would have been worded differently since they tied it directly to low yields in Sharp's plant.

    I also like the "we didn't have any problems, but we've fixed the problem" inconsistency, as well.


     


    Unless the exec said that sentence in english and not japanese there is no point in analysing the heck of the word used, its translated...

  • Reply 16 of 26
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    QC problems ARE technical production problems. 

    You beat me to it.

    There are two types of QC problems (in general).

    1. A technical issue that causes variability. These can be fixed.
    2. A management issue with companies that just don't give a hoot what kind of garbage they sell.

    Given that it's Sharp, #2 is extremely unlikely. Continuous improvement and Toyota Production System are hammered into employees from the first day they start work in Japan.

    Therefore, even if it's a QC problem, it's likely to be resolved unless the technology is just unresolvable.
    herbapou wrote: »
    Unless the exec said that sentence in english and not japanese there is no point in analysing the heck of the word used, its translated...

    Sorry, but it's all we have to go on.

    Besides, it means one of two things (with minor variations in wording):
    1. We are producing some volume that someone considers to be acceptable
    2. We've shipped every single unit that was requested with no problems.

    I suspect that even with translation, you should be able to tell if he was actually saying #2 rather than #1.
  • Reply 17 of 26
    jungmark wrote: »
    Oh it was one analyst that was predicting 10MM sales regardless if Apple can produce that many prior to the roll out. It still sold a record 5MM phones in a weekend (not including many (if not all) preorders. Other vendors would kill for that amount for a month.

    RIM only sold 7.3mil in the entire last quarter...oh, and 130k Playbooks and Apple sells 60% more iPads than that in a single day.
  • Reply 18 of 26

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hill60 View Post


     


    It's better than paying it to Samsung, actually Samsung could end up paying for quite a lot of it.


     



    Nah, doubt it. Sharp will be well out of business before Apple gets to collect a penny from Samsung (in the unlikely event that the ruling is upheld in the federal court of appeals). From what I hear Sharp already mortgaged all their manufacturing plants & office buildings in Japan just to stay in business and is basically at the "do-or-die" stage.  Most Japanese electronic makers are way past their prime - the on-going world economic crisis and the rising Yen certainly compound the problem.


     


    It won't surprised me a bit if Apple crawls back to Samsung begging for displays.

  • Reply 19 of 26


    I have been wondering if Apple released the iPhone 5 in September (rather than October) to pad their numbers a bit for the quarter. Maybe this whole issue with alleged supply constraints is just financial management on the part of Apple. 

  • Reply 20 of 26

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by LuxoM3 View Post



    Fwiw - I thought the Apple spin machine was pushing their luck claiming the sales numbers could be higher but supply was an issue...

    Because everyone I know who WANTED the iphone5 got one...

    Or is Apple covering itself because Wall Street was looking for 10m sales and Apple only sold 6m?


     


    Mine came today... a week earlier than promised. w00t.  I guess this will count towards Apple's sales for September period.

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