It has been announced that Japan Display has won its first order of OLED screens , for Apple Watch . It is expected that it will provide the first displays at the end of this year.
The news follows that of a recovery plan for the company that decided to switch from LCD to OLED production to avoid bankruptcy, a plan announced earlier this week.
Japan Display is known for LCD screens that are a declining business since Apple and other smartphone brands are progressively switching to OLEDs. The company has wanted for years to jump into OLED production but has had difficulty finding a volume of production such as to justify the necessary investments.
So far, the company has only fielded a pilot production of OLEDs, one of Reuters’ news
suggests that this – along with the curriculum gained in providing LCDs for iPhone – was enough to satisfy Apple.
Japan Display Inc will start providing Organic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) screens for Apple Watch at the end of the year, two sources said, a turning point for the ruined company whose switch to OLED has earned it an order from Apple .
The deal will mark the incursion of Japan Display in the OLED market, the two sources in question said, refusing to show their identity as they are not authorized to talk to the press.
The news will be a big hit for LG which currently produces the majority of Apple Watch screens. Investors welcomed the turnaround of Japan Display whose stocks rose by 6.3% in one day.
Reuters reports the company’s next goal will be to win the order for the iPhone OLEDs, which Japan Display plans to produce in China following an investment by the Chinese state fund Silk Road Fund. The investment would see the fund acquire the majority of the display company shares.
However, orders for the iPhone could be a much tougher challenge, says one of the major industry analysts, IHS Markit. Hiroshi Hayase, senior director of IHS Markit stated that this would be a positive step for Japan Display, but added that the company would find a way to climb. Samsung Display has built its experience in the field for more than a decade. Can Japan Display really compete with a rival of that caliber?
Samsung not only has the monopoly of the supply of screens for the family of iPhone X, but also the key license for the technologies used in those manufactures. Japan Display will have to face Apple quality and production volume standards using a slightly different manufacturing technique.