There are leaks from suppliers that curved screen prototypes are being tested for the new iPhone 8.
Changes for 2017 Lineup
Supplier leaks offer details regarding the changes that Apple is considering for its line up of devices in 2017. It is reported that the company will probably skip the S in its line up of phones and name the flagship phone as iPhone 8. Suppliers in Asia claim that the prototypes for next year’s iPhones are being tested with a curved screen.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the suppliers of Asia are being requested to enhance output of thinner OLEDs and offer a prototype screen having improved resolution, compared to the screens on Samsung phones.
The upcoming iPhones with OLED might come at a higher cost, as the screens are costlier for manufacturing. However, it will result in making the device flexible, similar to the Edge line up of Samsung phones.
However, according to the source mentioned in The Wall Street Journal, the OLED version iPhone to be released in 2017 might not come next year after all. This is because Apple is currently testing ten prototypes. If Apple decides to switch over to OLED display screens, it will be similar to the ones sported by Samsung and Xiaomi phones as well as Huawei or OnePlus phones. It will be a move away from the current LCD screen display.
Complications and Issues
There are also some issues expected with using the OLED display. Apple has many suppliers for the display and one of them is Samsung. However, Samsung is also one of the major competitors of Apple. Samsung Display, however, is only one of the many other tech companies that can offer OLED displays to Apple in mass production. Apple probably does not want to be over dependent on Samsung for the components of the new iPhone 8, so it is option for other companies as well for the display, namely LG Display and Japan Display along with Sharp.
OLED Supplier Problems
The problem is that LG Display does not have the quality or abilities of Samsung Display. As for Sharp, Foxconn, the parent company, is seen to be focusing less on its OLEDs, as the cost of manufacturing is rising. As far as Japan Display is concerned, it is reported that the company has invested in improved LCD panels, called Full Active panels. The latter makes use of film and not glass, as this option offers more flexibility and improves the quality of images.
Another challenge in using OLED for the display is that the flexibility could be limited while attempting to keep the components within the panels. This could create problems, as rumors claim that Apple is aiming at integrating the front camera with the Home button, all included in an edge to edge type of display for its new iPhone 8.
There were reports early in November that Apple will offer the iPhone 8 in three versions. One will come with a 5.8 inches screen in OLED. The others will come with TFT LCK panels, with a 4.7 inches screen and a 5.5 inches screen. There will be dual cameras in the big TFT LCD version as well as the OLED version of iPhone 8. LG sources claim that the iPhone 8 will also include a 3 dimensional camera.