Apple iPhone 8 to Sport Curved Samsung OLED Display

The upcoming iPhone 8 will overhaul basic form factor designs, gone will be the flat glass screen design to sport a curved plastic OLED display made by arch-rival Samsung, reported The Korean Herald.

“The OLED versions of the new iPhone will all have curved screens as Apple ordered only plastic OLED -- not glass -- from Samsung Display,” said a source familiar with the matter told The Korea Herald. “Samsung is capable of supplying a little less than 100 million units of curved OLED displays to Apple.”

Super Mario game app for iPhones. The next generation iPhone might lose its classic flat rounded rectangular form for a curved design.(Photo courtesy of Apple)

Samsung has been an early adaptor of curved plastic OLED screens for its Galaxy S7 Edge smartphones and other devices.

While the new iPhone will not be foldable, Apple might set the hardware apart from Samsung’s Galaxy series, which was first introduced into curved panels, by using new sensing technologies.

The new iPhone might not be using a new sensing technology, which is placed on the sides of the phone and responds upon detecting users contacting the sides of the device.

Although, Samsung Display will emerge as the sole supplier of curved OLED screens, with an estimated output of around 70 million to 100 million units, it amounts to less than half of Apple’s annual iPhone sales, which reaches at around 200 million units per year.

According to analyses from a Forbes report, the plastic phone screens might be resilient to shattering but can be more vulnerable to scratching than glass screens.

Remaining flat panels for LCDs screens for iPhones will be supplied by LG Display and JDI.

Even though Apple will mostly rely on Samsung for OLED panels next year, the iPhone manufacturer will gradually decrease its reliance on a single supplier to prevent leaks of information to its top smartphone rival.

Other reports claim LG Display, one of Apple’s longtime LCD suppliers, will be working with Apple and Google to develop foldable OLED smartphones in the near future. The Korean manufacturer will be shipping foldable panels to Apple, Google and Microsoft sometime in 2018, claimed the reports.

Samsung Electronics is also accelerating its own development of foldable devices that it intends to launch by 2018. Although, there are speculations that the Korean tech giant will launch the foldable phone by late 2017, industry sources claimed it was unlikely.

 “If Samsung rolls out foldable phones next year, it would have to sell it at a big loss -- even selling just a small volume. A profit-making company is unlikely to make such a decision,” said Lee Chang-hee, a professor researching OLED technologies at Seoul National University. 

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