Samsung and LG have begun preparing for Two-Stack OLED Displays for 2024 iPads that are now being described as 'Hybrid' Displays
In November 2021, Patently Apple posted a report titled "Apple is in discussions to move to a new two-stack tandem structured OLED display for future MacBooks with both Samsung & LG Display." In March 2022, Patently Apple posted a report titled "Samsung has begun development of a Two-Stack Tandem OLED Display first aimed for Apple's 2024 iPads and eventually Macs. In January 2023, we posted a report titled "Another rumor points to 2024 MacBooks and iPad Pro to use next-gen two-stack OLED Displays from Samsung, LG+." The supply chain build-up is now becoming reality.
Today, a new Korean report claims that Samsung and LG have started preparing for mass production of OLED display panels for Apple's 2024 iPad, likely the iPad Pro to begin with.
Korea's ETNews is reporting today that Samsung Display has confirmed that the supply of OLED display panels for the iPad and that they've started preparing for production with its partners. With the goal of installing iPad in 2024, it has begun to equip the facilities and cooperation system necessary for mass production of iPad OLED. Samsung Display plans to produce OLED for iPad at the 6th generation A3 line located in Asan, Chungcheongnam-do.
The two-stack OLED display is now being described as being characterized by a combination of flexible and rigid OLED technologies. It is a technology that applies the thin film encapsulation (TFE) process of flexible OLED on the glass substrate used for rigid OLED. It is called a 'hybrid' panel because it combines the two technologies.
Unlike when producing existing OLED panels, a new etching process was added for iPad OLED. Etching means to cut, and it is known that the glass substrate is made very thin to complete the panel.
Samsung Display has entrusted this etching process to its partner Chemtronics. Chemtronics also announced today that it would spend 24.2 billion won to build a 6th generation OLED etching facility. Chemtronics is in charge of making a 0.5mm (0.5T) thick glass substrate into 0.2mm (0.2T). Difficulty in commercialization of iPad OLED was expected due to its thin glass substrate, but it is interpreted that it overcame technical limitations and led to facility investment. Initially, Apple considered applying polyimide (PI)-based flexible OLED to the iPad .
It is known that the hybrid OLED that uses a glass substrate was finally selected because of the phenomenon that part of the screen looks distorted. LG Display is also planning to make OLED for iPad. LG Display is preparing for mass production of hybrid OLEDs at its 6th generation plant in Paju. LG Display is expected to cooperate with Avatec in etching.
Lastly, the report notes that OLED is being aimed for "The MacBook in 2026, in 14-inch and 16-inch models.
The Elec is also reporting this morning that mini-LED displays that have enjoyed growth due to Apple's adoption for the iPad Pro will have sales drop off as soon as Apple shifts to OLED panels.