LG testing OLED displays for Apple's MacBooks
LG has been testing Gen 8.5 OLED display deposition technology since December, reports Korean media, for future use in Apple's MacBooks and iPads. The Gen 8.5 substrates are larger than the current Gen 6 ones, so those bigger MacBook panels can be cut from them while achieving economies of scale. The tentative release date of the first OLED MacBook is said to be in 2025, says the industry report. LG will also be providing the screens for the first OLED iPads, but those will be smaller and made on the Gen 6 lines at first, and will appear before the first OLED MacBooks.
Moreover, Apple is reportedly keen to land dual-stack OLEDs for its future iPads and Macs, since depositing two OLED layers provide a display lifespan of at least a decade, and make it much brighter as well as about 30% more energy efficient than the current single-stack OLEDs in phones, tablets, and laptops. LG is the pioneer in dual-stack OLED display technology, and already supplies such panels for the automotive industry, notably for the Mercedes-Benz EQS pillar-to-pillar Hyperscreen. Cars need to be in service much longer than your average phone, so single-stack panels just don't cut it as image quality might deteriorate in a few years, given the inferior stability of the materials that the blue diodes are made of.
Samsung is said to be working on Gen 8.5 substrates of its own and might bring them to market sooner than LG given its OLED engineering prowess as well as the fact that it can equip its own devices with them first as a test bed. Samsung is still developing its own dual-stack OLED technology, though, while LG will be done with the Gen 8.5 testing for MacBooks and iPads as soon as this year, tip the industry insiders in the report. Thus, LG might monopolize the OLED display supply for larger Apple devices the way Samsung monopolized the delivery of OLED screens for Apple's iPhones in the beginning of its shift to OLED display technology.