LG and Apple Said to Invest in OLED Manufacturing Capacity (Jul 25, 2017)
LG Confirms Interest in its Display Business, Doesn’t Mention Google – Android Authority (Apr 12, 2017)
Apple iPhone 8 rumors: Features may include facial recognition, laser sensor – Business Insider (Jan 18, 2017)
Cowen doesn’t have the same track record in predicting future iPhones as KGI, which has by far the best, so we should take all this with a pinch of salt. But it’s in keeping with the broad sense that Apple is very interested in augmented reality, and would need to put more sensors and other technology into its products to enable AR functions. I’m still intrigued by the idea of further splitting the iPhone line – there are already three sizes, and this research note posits a fourth, larger one, with exclusive access to an OLED screen and embedded fingerprint sensor. There’s some logic to that, because all the supply chain chatter suggests Apple would have a very hard time finding enough OLED technology to power all of the next generation of iPhones, so making it exclusive to the highest end device would limit demand to a smaller number. Even so, that device is likely to be in high demand, as was the 7 Plus with Jet Black finish, another phone with supply constraints.
2017 – the year to get excited about smartphones again (Dec 22, 2016)
It’s been fascinating to watch Xiaomi get so much credit for its innovation with screens here – as a concept it’s been rumored for months if not years that this edge-to-edge screen is something Apple has been working on, though Xiaomi is one of the first to execute it in a production device. It’s worth noting, though, that Xiaomi’s sales will be a tiny fraction of Apple’s when its version launches – this is a hollow victory at best.
Reporting has suggested for some time now that Apple will be seeking to use OLED for in at least some of its 2017 iPhone models. The challenge is that OLED displays are in high demand and short supply, so supply constraints might be an issue.