LG abandoned manufacturing LCD panels for the iPhone

Tram Ho

LG Display has confirmed that it has stopped producing LCD panels for the iPhone, and related lines will switch to production of car screens. In addition, the company said, it may stop developing LG-branded smartphones in the near future, after losing about $ 4.5 billion in the past five years.

LG từ bỏ sản xuất tấm nền LCD cho iPhone - Ảnh 1.

Specifically, LG Display’s previous LCD factory for the iPhone will switch to production of car screens. In the third quarter of last year, the AP3 production line in Gumi, Korea, stopped producing LCD panels for the iPhone. In the fourth quarter, the line also abandoned orders for panels from other cell phone manufacturers.

Currently, LG CEO Bong-Seok Kwon has informed staff about the consideration of making major changes to the smartphone business. For LG Display, the profitability of the LCD production line for the iPhone is very low. In addition, the iPhone 12 series has switched to OLED panels and is expected to surpass sales of LCD iPhone models this year.

Apple’s LCD iPhone SE, released last year, will use panels from JDI and Sharp, and LG has previously tried to win the order, but with no success.

Used to be a major iPhone screen supplier

LG Display used to be the main iPhone display supplier, alongside SamSung. Apple benefits from having two supply companies with the technical prerequisites required. However, when the iPhone X started using OLED screens, the situation changed.

Regarding the industry’s trend from LCD to OLED, LG Display realized very late and was unprepared for Apple’s transition. This made Samsung the sole display supplier for Apple’s flagship phones for a while.

Of course, LG Display eventually caught up and won Apple’s OLED order, which was expected to begin supplying panels for the iPhone in 2022. The subsequent technical breakdown kept Samsung firmly in the lead. in terms of technology and LG Display is slowly falling behind.

Focus on the car screen

Accordingly, the AP3 production line will focus on manufacturing automotive displays and will use low-temperature polysilicon (LTPS) thin film transistors (TFT) technology. Compared with the amorphous silicon (a-Si) TFT, LTPS TFT has an advantage in producing a larger panel, the back panel is mainly used for navigation products from 7 inch to 8 inch.

Currently, most automotive LCDs over 20 inches use LTPS TFT technology. LG Display produces LCD a-Si panels at plant P5, while automotive OLED panels are manufactured at E5 factory. It is expected that LG Display will reduce a-Si business, as competition from competitors such as Fang (BOE) and AUO (AUO) will become increasingly fierce.

The data shows that for automotive displays 9 inches or larger, LG Display has a 24.9 percent share, followed by JDI and BOE, with 14.6 percent and 13.9 percent share respectively. In addition, Tianma ranked 4th with 9.8% and AUO ranked 5th with 8.9%.

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Source : Genk