Shanghai's major financial newspaper the National Business Daily (NBD) is reporting today that Apple's iPhone 5 has been hampered by capacity problems related to substandard In-Cell displays. Sources tell NBD that Apple is seriously considering a switch to One Glass Solution (OGS) based displays.
The report went as far as to state that Wintek executives would be flying to California to discuss panel orders with Apple. Chinese OGS panel maker Truly Semiconductors' product design manager Chen Xuebin told National Business Daily that the conformity rate of OGS panels will increase 70% or more compared to that of InCell panels. The production costs will also be lowered to a level that is similar to the production of the iPhone 4S, Chen added.
Yet the Chinese news site China Times is stating that Apple is concerned that OSG panels have a problem with border strength being reduced by 30%.
Earlier this month DigiTimes was reporting that Apple could be preparing a new iPhone for early 2012 that would resolve production problems with low yield rates. The report didn't specify at the time the problems stemmed from low yield In-Cell display problems. In context, the news about Apple's In-Cell display production problems now appear to have some credibility.
To be clear, the issue isn't that the current iPhone 5 displays are inferior as far as a consumer product is concerned. The issue is really an internal matter relating to production yield so that Apple could ship more iPhones per quarter.
Phil Schiller first introduced the new in-cell technology during the iPhone 5's debut in September by stating that "The engineering team went much further. They've done some breakthrough work and have integrated touch sensors right into the display itself," referring to the next generation in-cell display. "This makes the display 30% thinner than the iPhone 4S while making the image sharper with less glare in sunlight. It's truly the world's most advanced display," said Schiller. While that may be true, it now appears that as far as production is concerned, in-cell displays may have their share of drawbacks.