2012 launch expected with 6 million units
Two companies, LG and AU Optronics, have been certified to supply LCD panels for Apple's rumored 7/7.85-inch iPad, says the Taiwanese publication Liberty Times. The firms are claimed to be aiming toward a product launch sometime in the second half of 2012, and an initial run of 6 million iPads. Liberty adds that TPK is expected to produce 4 million backlight modules, while Chimei Innolux will build 2 million; Nissha Printing will allegedly produce the touch film sensor.
iPad display production plans said including mini
Persistent talk of a smaller iPad in development was fueled again after rumors surfaced on Monday. Taiwan's Economic Daily News claimed that AU Optronics had been picked as one of the suppliers for the previously mentioned 7.85-inch display's LCD panel. LG Display would also be involved, but Samsung would reportedly be out of the production loop.
Samsung may use Chinese firm to make iPad 3 LCDs
An atypical leak on Sunday saw the the manufacturing roots of the reported iPad 3's display more than the displays themselves. With the 2048x1536 resolution already identified, a WePost.me forum contribution showed what's claimed to be shots from contractor Radiant Opto-Electronics' plant as it shipped a batch of the new screens. Although located in Wujiang, near Shanghai, the displays are labeled and boxed as Samsung displays that are reportedly shipped to Samsung in Korea before they reach Apple.
Agree to help prosecute other LCD panel vendors
Seven LCD panel makers, including Samsung, Sharp, and Chimei Innolux, have reached accords to settle claims that they conspired to limit competition and fix prices for their displays used in laptops, monitors and TVs. If approved, the proposed $539 million settlement will resolve several cases pending in the US district court in San Francisco, and affect buyers as indirect victims. Earlier this month, another settlement for $388 million was reached in the same court with "direct" purchasers of the panels, who then put these panels into their own products.
Settlement reaches accord for 8 class-action suits
Sharp, Samsung, and six others making LCD panels used in computers and TVs have agreed to settle several class action suits alleging price fixing. The vendors will pay a total of $388 million to resolve eight separate cases before a Northern District of California District Court judge in San Francisco. As part of the deal, all the companies avoid having to admit any wrongdoing.
Acer and ASUS tap AUO, Chi Mei for dense LCDs
Acer and ASUS are reportedly developing very high density displays to try to head off the iPad 3's 2048x1536 display, a new rumor claimed Wednesday. AU Optronics and Chi Mei Innolux were said by Digitimes' industry contacts to be working on 1920x1280 (incorrectly marked as 1928) LCDs that would go into new ultrabooks as soon as January or February. The Retina Display effect would be "forcing" upgrades at PC builders.
iPad 2 stock trims as iPad 3 gets new supplier
Apple may be cutting back on iPad 2 shipments as it gears up to introduce a new supplier for iPad 3 LCDs, according to new rumors from the parts chain. LCD contractors were said by Digitimes to be making "inventory adjustments" by about 850,000 of the tablet's screens. In October, LG Display had cut its production by 500,000, while Chi Mei Innolux had cut its small output in half from 700,000 to 350,000.
Samsung only real source for OLED panels
Despite recent reports, it's unlikely that Apple will use OLED panels in its products anytime soon, says Canaccord Genuity analyst Jonathan Dorsheimer. Last Thursday a patent application emerged suggesting Apple interest in a more power-efficient OLED display. The news helped send stock of an OLED maker, Universal Display, up 17 percent during Friday trading.
Wintek allegedly hit by iPhone 5 screen issue
Apple's shipments of the iPhone 5 might have been slowed down by a defect surfacing in some touchscreens, a rumor maintained late Thursday. Wintek, which normally makes a significant portion of Apple's touch panels, has supposedly had a problem with 'delayed bubbles,' Digitimes said. While not serious given similarity to the iPhone 4 process, the issue can sometimes be found only during the final assembly process, at which point it's too late to fix the panel.
Scope of investigation larger than expected
South Korea's antitrust regulator, the Fair Trade Commission (FTC), has detailed the scope of an investigation into alleged price fixing by LCD manufacturers. The FTC is investigating a total of ten vendors. Last month, it revealed that it had found that Samsung, LG, and Chimei Innolux had colluded to fix LCD panel prices.
LG Display fixes iPad 2 backlight bleeds
LG Display has reportedly solved the chronic iPad 2 backlight bleeding that was affecting its ability to produce LCDs for Apple. It successfully ramped production back up to four million displays a month in August from 2.6 million at most in July. The new production level should keep up through at least September, Digitimes insiders claimed.
Sony, Hitachi, Toshiba join small LCD production
Sony, Hitachi, and Toshiba on Wednesday confirmed an alliance to work together on mobile LCDs. The deal, helped by $2.6 billion in government funds, will see them share production on displays for smartphones and tablets. They plan to research more advanced displays as well, such as OLEDs
CMI has trouble matching iPad 3 display goals
Chimei Innolux has been locked out of making iPad 3 displays for the near future, part suppliers outlined in a claim on Friday. Although it's currently making iPad 2 screens, it has supposedly been unable to make the 2048x1536 iPad 3 LCDs. The Taiwan firm was said by Digitimes to have problems with light transmittance in the higher-density display, which needs a stronger backlight, as well as yield problems.
Parts fail drop tests
Apple has suspended new iPad 2 panel orders from LG Display because of some serious production issues, say industry sources. LG's panels allegedly failed recent drop tests, during which backlight units malfunctioned. The company's yield rates, more critically, are said to be below Apple requirements. In July LG shipped somewhere between 2.5 and 2.6 million panels, a million units below its original goal for the month. The company's longer-term goal is 4 million a month.
About 5 million iPad 2 touch panels due in July
Apple may be planning a larger production ramp than first thought for the iPad 2 this summer. Part supplier leaks Tuesday have the company's combined partners shipping five million touch panels just in July. Digitimes' sources said that Apple had also moved five million in June, making it likely the company is shipping as many or more during the holidays.
iPad 2 panel spike hints at shipment rush
Apple is expecting a large surge in demand for the iPad 2 in the back-to-school period, leaked supply numbers hint. One of the tablet's panel makers, Chimei Innolux, is expected to ship 400,000 to 500,000 iPads in June but more than double that to crest over one million a month in July. Combined with manufacturing from TPK and Wintek, the data led Digitims to word of shipments of 3.5 million to four million iPads every month, or 10.5 million to 12 million every quarter.
Should streamline iPad 2 production
Chimei Innolux is indeed set to become another Apple touch sensor supplier, and will start shipping parts to Apple in June, industry sources say. The development may help Apple to streamline production of the iPad 2. Chimei is an affiliate of Foxconn, Apple's main manufacturing partner. In combination with Chimei's development of IPS flat panels, Apple should have access to a one-stop shop for iPads, the sources suggest.
LG light leaks pinned for iPad 2 shipment issues
A large part of the iPad 2's shortage issues were put at LG Display's feet on Thursday night through claims from supply sources. LG Display reportedly had light leakage problems for screens made at its sixth-generation LCD plant and could only ship 3.2 million iPad LCDs between January and March. Samsung, already helping out, ended up producing more at seven million, Digitimes understood.
Apple bulks up supplies to cope with demand
Chimei Innolux is set to become a third supplier of touchpanels for the iPad 2, say two sources contacted by Bloomberg. Parts will allegedly start shipping to Apple next month, joining existing touchpanel streams from TPK and Wintek. Spokespeople for Apple and Chimei have refused to comment, but both companies have a policy of staying quiet on partners in the manufacturing chain.
Next iPad may lose 100K-200K production
Apple's future iPad may have seen a drop in early production owing to both problems and a late change from Apple itself. New tips from part suppliers suggest that Apple will have shrunk its initial iPad 2 production in the first quarter of the year by 100,000 to 200,000 tablets, down to 300,000 to 400,000. Low supply of touchscreen layers and an "adjustment in specifications" were to blame, Digitimes' sources said.
LCD makers put Apple's iPad shipments at 65m
Apple could ship as many as 65 million iPads in 2011 based on the LCD orders it's placing, according to estimates from Tuesday night. LG Display is still said to be shipping the bulk of the tablet's displays, at 35 million, but frequent contributor Samsung and relative newcomer Chimei Innolux are each though to be pitching in 15 million of their own. Observers in the business told Digitimes this might be a positive sign for Apple's next iPad but also that it could represent an overcommitment.
EU announces fines for long-running LCD cartel
The European Commission on Wednesday announced several key decisions, one of which involves fining six LCD makers for being involved in a price-fixing cartel between October 2001 and February 2006. The fines amount to the equivalent of $856 million (649 million euros) and need to be paid by Korea's Samsung and LG as well as Taiwan's AU Optronics, Chimei InnoLux, Chunghwa Picture Tubes and HannStar. While the companies are based outside of Europe, the cartel's actions affected the price of products sold in Europe.
Foxconn starts iPad factories to cope with demand
Foxconn's recently launched Chengdu factories have turned tor producing iPads to help cope with demand, part makers claimed on Tuesday. The lines for the Apple tablet would start out at 10,000 per day, but at 300,000 per month would help keep up with holiday demand and beyond. Insiders for Digitimes said it had already started shipping iPads this month and could be a "major supply base" by early 2011, in time for the next-generation iPad.
Chimei said making iPad displays in 2011
Taiwan's Chimei Innolux may be giving Apple an increasing amount of help making iPad displays next year, CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets said on Friday. It claimed that just 10 percent of the touchscreens would be made by Chimei next year but that it would gradually play a more important role over the course of the year, taking up 15 percent of the load in the spring, 20 percent in the summer and 30 percent next fall. The analysts expected tablets like the iPad to account for six percent of Chimei's revenue in 2011 and 10 percent a year later.
Suppliers to ship for 2nd-gen iPad in early 2011
Touchscreen part suppliers were said this evening to be validating their processes for the next full-size iPad. Cando, Chimei Innolux, TPK and Wintek are all supposedly having "ultra-thin," 9.7-inch glass touch panels tested for the Apple tablet before they can enter full production. The Digitimes contacts expected the parts to ship at the very start of 2011 for a launch sometime in the early part of that same year.
E Ink to bring out color, touchscreen panels
Taiwan's E Ink has built two new e-paper devices that are undergoing testing by their buyers and should be released later this year or early in 2011, company chairman Scott Liu said recently. Each has a touchscreen, but one is capacitive while the other is electromagnetic. The company's color e-paper displays, meanwhile, were purchased by Hanvon, with devices expected to launch this fall.
2010 iPhone leans more on parts from Taiwan
Apple has switched up the suppliers in use for the new iPhone, a report by Taiwan's Economic Daily News paper said today. Foxconn will still put together the finished product, but Apple is now believed using three companies for the touch layer: Chimei Innolux is making 15 percent of the panels while the rest is split between Wintek and TPK. The American company is also leaning more heavily on Taiwan as a whole, as quartz maker TXC and laminate maker Taiflex Scientific are moving from less than a fifth of orders to 45 and 65 percent each.
ASUS to bring out 17-inch 3D notebook in summer
ASUS will soon follow up its 15-inch G51J-3D notebook with a 17-inch version, according to industry sources from Chimei Innolux Corporation (CMI), Samsung and LG Display. The three companies are apparently in talks with ASUS on providing displays for the notebook, which was billed last year for an early 2010 release. The new information puts the 17-inch notebook at a summer release date.