New MicroLED displays are tipped to be slimmer and brighter than current OLED panels, besides being more power intensive as well.
Apple is reported to be working on its own MicroLED screen technology to use on future iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch devices. Exact details are lacking at the moment though what is known is that it would be a new kind of a technology that would use a different lighting element than OLED.
Further, the new micro-LED displays would be slimmer and brighter than current OLED panels while also sipping less of battery juice. No wonder such a display would be a revolutionary development over current display technologies though a commercial launch of the same isn’t expected in the next couple of years.
Also, while such a display will eventually make it to all Apple devices, it is Apple Watch that would be among the first recipients. Maybe that has to do with the head of the micro-LED display division – Lynn Youngs who is also actively engaged on the display technology associated with Apple Watch. In fact, the micro-LED displays for the Apple smartwatch is reported to have been complete already though it is not sure if it’s going to debut with the next Apple Watch iteration itself.
The project codenamed T159 also hasn’t been without its own set of challenges. In fact, so daunting it had proved to be during the initial stages that it was almost abandoned about a year back. However, fresh inputs from engineers have revived the same and is believed to have reached an advanced stage as well.
The project is being implemented in a new manufacturing facility set up in Santa Clara, California, which is just a 15 min drive away from Apple Park, Cupertino. This also is the first time Apple is investing in display technology for its own devices. That again won’t be good news for traditional display makers such as Sharp, Japan Display, LG and even arch-rivals Samsung who all are among Apple’s regular suppliers.
The new display will also help address one of the key points critics have always been vocal of with the iPhone, that of its display. While competitors have never shied off from offering the latest and far better displays on their phones, Apple has traditionally been a laggard on this front. In fact, it has only been the latest iPhone X that features an OLED panel for the first time with the iPhone 8 series continuing with LCD panels.
Things though are expected to make a quantum jump once the new micro-LED display technology fructifies.