Apple rumored to debut OLED iPhone in 2017

Posted:
in iPhone edited March 2016
A report on Wednesday claims Apple is planning to incorporate OLED display technology in its iPhone lineup in 2017, a year earlier than previous estimates, though the new screen technology will be limited to certain high-end models due to initial supply constraints.




According to sources familiar with Apple's business dealings, the company reached out to South Korean display suppliers LG and Samsung in December to discuss the viability of ramping up OLED production in time for next year's iPhone launch, Nikkei reports. Along with the two tech companies, Apple also informed the appropriate industry associations of the potential change.

Apple is expected to take advantage of OLED's unique properties, specifically the ability to conform with curved handset designs, but the report claims the last minute decision to launch in 2017 leaves those prospects in limbo. Manufacturers don't have enough time to ensure panel reliability in conjunction with a potentially unconventional design, and Apple wants to bring OLED to market as soon as possible, the report said.

Apple is supposedly looking to OLED to offset a predicted stall in iPhone sales, though current analyst projections don't anticipate a plateau in 2017. In any case, the company built conditions into its contracts with panel makers that allow for timeline adjustments, facilitating an earlier-than-expected start.

Last November, Nikkei was among the first publications to report on iPhone's rumored switch to OLED, saying at the time that indications pointed to a 2018 debut. Subsequent rumors seemingly corroborated those claims, adding that existing LCD panel suppliers LG and Samsung would be responsible for initial orders. Apple Watch display supplier LG, for example, is pumping serious capital into a buildout of its OLED facilities.

Sharp is also said to be developing its own OLED operation, though a protracted Foxconn takeover process could postpone such investments.

Apple usually reserves major component changes for numbered iPhone releases, such as this year's expected iPhone 7 redesign, though the company did integrate an entirely new 3D Touch subsystem in the "off year" iPhone 6s. Despite reports to the contrary, noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who has a solid track record when it comes to predicting Apple's product pipeline, said he doesn't expect iPhone to go OLED until 2019.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 29
    staticx57staticx57 Posts: 400member
    Good to hear.
  • Reply 2 of 29
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,452member
    Makes sense. iPhone 7S will guarantee sales with a slick new low power screen and and exclusive dark UI in an otherwise identical phone. It will be a much more obvious improvement than 3D Touch.
    edited March 2016
  • Reply 3 of 29
    Bull. Apple might switch to OLED, that wouldn't surprise me. But to think that they'd have it "limited to high end models" is stupid. The iPhone 7S and the 7S Plus will be the only phones released at the time, and they're both high end models. Apple doesn't make low end models, they make high end models and then continue to sell them as the years go on at lower prices.
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  • Reply 4 of 29
    2017 is an "S" year..Gotta have a selling point for the iPhone 7s..
  • Reply 5 of 29
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,452member
    Bull. Apple might switch to OLED, that wouldn't surprise me. But to think that they'd have it "limited to high end models" is stupid. The iPhone 7S and the 7S Plus will be the only phones released at the time, and they're both high end models. Apple doesn't make low end models, they make high end models and then continue to sell them as the years go on at lower prices.
    Well, since the issue is yield, it could be limited to the 7s Plus initially. And to the extent they're able to supply the 7s & 7s Plus, they might not equip a possible 4-inch "7c" with the more expensive screens. While it's less likely, there's also a scenario where they offer the 7s in a 16/32/64GB LCD configuration only, with a 128/256GB OLED configuration. I can easily see Apple doing all of those things. 
    edited March 2016
  • Reply 6 of 29
    quadra 610quadra 610 Posts: 6,745member
    "A report on Wednesday claims"

    "According to sources familiar with Apple's business dealings"

    "Apple is expected to"

    "
    Apple is supposedly"


    tomkarl
  • Reply 7 of 29
    cornchipcornchip Posts: 1,415member
    One cool thing about OLED on the phones, is that they could incorporate glances like they do with the Watch. Just pull the phone out of your pocket to see the time and notifications. Apple may may want to keep that a Watch feature for marketing purposes though. I guess technically it's possible to do it now, but from what I gather it's particularly nice with OLED since you're only turning on the pixels used for what needs to be displayed rather than the entire backlight. Either way would be cool.
  • Reply 8 of 29
    irelandireland Posts: 17,684member
    Good because it's 2016 and the iPhone 6s while it is an excellent display has less than excellent black levels. Take an all black background with a small amount of white text on it, i.e. a centred-title movie credit transition and you'll see not very dark blacks. In fact I've done a comparison and in that scenario the 6 and 6s has brighter black-levels than an iPhone 5 (as in worse; due to the larger backlight I suppose). But that explanation is irrelevant. The end result is the only thing that counts. Not that OLED displays are without fault. I've heard complains that even modern ones suffer odd motion blur and artifact issues—even expensive TVs. What we need is a smartphone display what the Kuro was to TV displays.
    edited March 2016
  • Reply 9 of 29
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,521member
    "A report on Wednesday claims"

    "According to sources familiar with Apple's business dealings"

    "Apple is expected to"

    "Apple is supposedly"


    "...to offset a predicted stall in iPhone sales..." — as if transitory market details would outweigh technology decisions of this scale and importance.

    How small can a small thinker think?
    edited March 2016 quadra 610nolamacguy
  • Reply 10 of 29
    Bull. Apple might switch to OLED, that wouldn't surprise me. But to think that they'd have it "limited to high end models" is stupid. The iPhone 7S and the 7S Plus will be the only phones released at the time, and they're both high end models. Apple doesn't make low end models, they make high end models and then continue to sell them as the years go on at lower prices.
    What about the 6 SE?
  • Reply 11 of 29
    bluefire1bluefire1 Posts: 922member
    This is one of the few times I hope Ming-Chi Kuo is wrong. I'm glad the article suggests that OLED is coming next year. I remember when Motorola sat on its laurels after it introduced the innovative StarTac, and later on the sensational Razr and we know what happened afterwards. Apple needs to stay ahead of the curve and not just relish in its success.  For example, the company switched gears when it finally acknowledged being behind the curve, when it came to having larger screen sizes. Fortunately, Apple successfully made up for lost time, but that should have been a warning. It's not about how thin they can make the phone: it's about giving people what they didn't know they want (thank you Steve Jobs), but also giving people what they do want (longer battery life for instance).



  • Reply 12 of 29
    Dudes. This is ridiculous. Next September Apple will not have enough phones because of supply constraints 18 months from now. And, ha ha, it is a"last minute" decision. Very stoked for this product. Um product phantasy ;-)
  • Reply 13 of 29
    indyfxindyfx Posts: 320member
    Oh puh-lease They drag this story out nearly ever year for what seems like the last 5 or 6 years. And the sources are always "people familiar with apple" or "insider sources" And the 'turfers always reply "oh thats good! (that they are finally catching up to samsung)" OLED's have serous problems (longevity among them) and less color accuracy than the LCD's apple currently uses. Why would they downgrade? (they wouldn't) Their only real advantage, power consumption is not something the iPhone has issues with (Apple is obviously hitting their design spec otherwise it wouldn't be that thin) "Apple is expected to take advantage of OLED's unique properties, specifically the ability to conform with curved handset designs" Curved handset? Again, Oh Puh-lease OLEDS are a solution in search of a problem. Curved handset displays (just like curved TV's) are no more than a valueless marketing gimmick.
    edited March 2016 netmagenolamacguy
  • Reply 14 of 29
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,781member
    flaneur said:
    "A report on Wednesday claims"

    "According to sources familiar with Apple's business dealings"

    "Apple is expected to"

    "Apple is supposedly"


    "...to offset a predicted stall in iPhone sales..." — as if transitory market details would outweigh technology decisions of this scale and importance.

    How small can a small thinker think?

    Indeed. 

    And here's where the report gets nailed to the BS tree. 


    but the report claims the last minute decision to launch in 2017


    Yes, because a company will globally launch a new product as a 'last minute' decision. When OLED doesn't show up next year, the same reporter will claim it did exist but was cancelled as a 'last minute decision'. 

    Where do they find these idiots?

    edited March 2016 suddenly newton
  • Reply 15 of 29
    foggyhillfoggyhill Posts: 4,767member
    bluefire1 said:
    This is one of the few times I hope Ming-Chi Kuo is wrong. I'm glad the article suggests that OLED is coming next year. I remember when Motorola sat on its laurels after it introduced the innovative StarTac, and later on the sensational Razr and we know what happened afterwards. Apple needs to stay ahead of the curve and not just relish in its success.  For example, the company switched gears when it finally acknowledged being behind the curve, when it came to having larger screen sizes. Fortunately, Apple successfully made up for lost time, but that should have been a warning. It's not about how thin they can make the phone: it's about giving people what they didn't know they want (thank you Steve Jobs), but also giving people what they do want (longer battery life for instance).



    So, people like you who said Apple was behind the times 3 years ago when OLED was a bleeding pile of hurt longevity wise on a cell phone, we're you prescient of just full of it?

    That Samsung sold POS OLEDs for years before the tech was ready makes them now heros? You think some people won't remember being guinea pigs?
    The longevity issue on OLED is close to being solved NOW, not last year or even the year before; that means, like always Apple is not behind the curve at all.

    Considering that Apple owns this tech which is seen as  a OLED replacement doesn't phsase you it seems?

    Why replacement? Because of massive yield issues, OLED is sort of not living to the hype and may in fact not be the next big thing.

    http://appleinsider.com/articles/15/07/27/apple-owned-micro-led-display-technology-earns-high-praise-seen-as-potential-oled-replacement




  • Reply 16 of 29
    cnocbuicnocbui Posts: 3,613member
    foggyhill said:
    bluefire1 said:
    This is one of the few times I hope Ming-Chi Kuo is wrong. I'm glad the article suggests that OLED is coming next year. I remember when Motorola sat on its laurels after it introduced the innovative StarTac, and later on the sensational Razr and we know what happened afterwards. Apple needs to stay ahead of the curve and not just relish in its success.  For example, the company switched gears when it finally acknowledged being behind the curve, when it came to having larger screen sizes. Fortunately, Apple successfully made up for lost time, but that should have been a warning. It's not about how thin they can make the phone: it's about giving people what they didn't know they want (thank you Steve Jobs), but also giving people what they do want (longer battery life for instance).



    So, people like you who said Apple was behind the times 3 years ago when OLED was a bleeding pile of hurt longevity wise on a cell phone, we're you prescient of just full of it?

    That Samsung sold POS OLEDs for years before the tech was ready makes them now heros? You think some people won't remember being guinea pigs?
    The longevity issue on OLED is close to being solved NOW, not last year or even the year before; that means, like always Apple is not behind the curve at all.

    Considering that Apple owns this tech which is seen as  a OLED replacement doesn't phsase you it seems?

    Why replacement? Because of massive yield issues, OLED is sort of not living to the hype and may in fact not be the next big thing.

    http://appleinsider.com/articles/15/07/27/apple-owned-micro-led-display-technology-earns-high-praise-seen-as-potential-oled-replacement
    You have not a clue what you are talking about. My 6 years pf daily use Samsung OLED:



    And the photo doesn't begin to do justice how strong that blue is to the human eye.  the camera just doesn't have enough dynamic range.

  • Reply 17 of 29
    cnocbuicnocbui Posts: 3,613member
    indyfx said:
    Oh puh-lease They drag this story out nearly ever year for what seems like the last 5 or 6 years. And the sources are always "people familiar with apple" or "insider sources" And the 'turfers always reply "oh thats good! (that they are finally catching up to samsung)" OLED's have serous problems (longevity among them) and less color accuracy than the LCD's apple currently uses. Why would they downgrade? (they wouldn't) Their only real advantage, power consumption is not something the iPhone has issues with (Apple is obviously hitting their design spec otherwise it wouldn't be that thin) "Apple is expected to take advantage of OLED's unique properties, specifically the ability to conform with curved handset designs" Curved handset? Again, Oh Puh-lease OLEDS are a solution in search of a problem. Curved handset displays (just like curved TV's) are no more than a valueless marketing gimmick.
    OLEDs don't have trouble with colour accuracy - Samsung was the problem.  They fixed that with the last several generations of products by including an accurate screen profile as an option as well as the over-saturated profiles they have been known for.  OLEDs do not have a longevity problem.
  • Reply 18 of 29
    msanttimsantti Posts: 1,377member
    Gee, about time!

    Apple really behind the curve on this one.

    Samsung has the highest rated phone displays  out there.

    Get with the program Apple.

    http://www.displaymate.com/Galaxy_S7_ShootOut_1.htm
  • Reply 19 of 29
    seankillseankill Posts: 492member
    cnocbui said:
    indyfx said:
    Oh puh-lease They drag this story out nearly ever year for what seems like the last 5 or 6 years. And the sources are always "people familiar with apple" or "insider sources" And the 'turfers always reply "oh thats good! (that they are finally catching up to samsung)" OLED's have serous problems (longevity among them) and less color accuracy than the LCD's apple currently uses. Why would they downgrade? (they wouldn't) Their only real advantage, power consumption is not something the iPhone has issues with (Apple is obviously hitting their design spec otherwise it wouldn't be that thin) "Apple is expected to take advantage of OLED's unique properties, specifically the ability to conform with curved handset designs" Curved handset? Again, Oh Puh-lease OLEDS are a solution in search of a problem. Curved handset displays (just like curved TV's) are no more than a valueless marketing gimmick.
    OLEDs don't have trouble with colour accuracy - Samsung was the problem.  They fixed that with the last several generations of products by including an accurate screen profile as an option as well as the over-saturated profiles they have been known for.  OLEDs do not have a longevity problem.



    Have you ever looked at Samsung OLED phones/tablets in Bestbuy? I do, every generation. The S5 has SERIOUS burn in issues. The Samsung guy there blamed in on the bad demo that let the phone set on the screens forever; however, he claimed, they were uploading a new demo that would prevent this. Hmmm, OK I thought. 

    The Note 5 and S6 come out, with a new demo, I think? Anyway, guess what I find? Burn in/Ghosting, whichever you chose to call it. The screen it is on makes it hard to see but look in the center for darker lines. It was much more obvious on white screens. The phone was clearly running a Demo that switched the screen often. The phone was 3 months old at the time. This may not be real world experience, I wouldn't know, but every Samsung phone/tablet over 3 months old showed this in the 2 Bestbuys I checked. I am quite skeptical of the technology for obvious reasons. None of the Apple products I tested showed similar issues, even the real old iPads and iPhones.

    Just throwing this out there. OLEDs also struggle in life span, mostly the blue OLEDS. 

    I would buy an OLED iPhone but I won't be buying one in 2017. Not sure about 2018.


    edited March 2016
  • Reply 20 of 29
    bulldogsbulldogs Posts: 37member

    That Samsung sold POS OLEDs for years before the tech was ready makes them now heros? You think some people won't remember being guinea pigs?
    The longevity issue on OLED is close to being solved NOW, not last year or even the year before; that means, like always Apple is not behind the curve at all.
    Yawn. 

    http://www.androidauthority.com/amoled-vs-lcd-differences-572859/



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