LG Display and other flat panel makers in Japan and China have been gearing up efforts to develop OLED technology aiming to compete with Samsung Electronics for orders from Apple, according to industry sources.
LG Display has high potential to become the second OLED panel supplier for Apple in 2018, said sources at Taiwan's Photonic Industry and Technology Development Association (PIDA).
Sharp, now a Foxconn Electronics company, is likely to come ahead of fellow company Japan Display (JDI) to crank out OLED screens as early as in the second quarter of 2018, said the sources, citing Japan-based media reports.
Sharp also aims to mount the flexible OLED screens on some of its own premium smartphone models set to launch in 2018, the sources added.
China currently has a total of 13 fabs capable of rolling out small- to medium-sized OLED panels. The combined production capacity of these 13 fabs, of which 11 are 6G lines, will reach 350,000 substrates a month if all of them come online, said the sources.
The overall OLED panel production capacity from panel makers in Korea, Japan and China will definitely far surpass that of actual demand in coming years leading to oversupply of the panels, commented the sources.
The applications of the OLED panels are likely to expand from handsets to other premier models of consumer electronics products, which could help minimize the adverse impact caused by oversupply, said the sources.