Apple Begins Selling New iPad Pro featuring M1 Chip in Taiwan, Expected to Drive Supply Chain Growth

To grab a share in the stay-at-home market, Apple Inc. released the new iPad Pro featuring the company’s M1 chip on its official website in Taiwan today, which may benefit its suppliers including Foxconn (OEM), Catcher (phone case provider), as well as numerous upstream and downstream suppliers of Mini LEDs.

By actually ordering an iPad Pro on Apple’s Taiwan website, the Central News Agency discovered that the 11-inch model and 12.9-inch model with a Mini LED display are estimated to be delivered between June 10 and June 12, meaning that buyers have to wait one week to receive the product ordered today.

According to the tech giant’s announcement on its official website, the M1 chip adopts an 8-core CPU design, which boasts faster CPU and GPU performance than A12Z Bionic by up to 50% and 40%, respectively.

As indicated by TrendForce, a tech research institution, demand for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro has already been high in niche markets. With a comprehensive upgrade and price increase of only US$100 (approx. NT$2,750), the new 12.9-inch model is expected to have an expanded shipment volume in 2021 from 4 million to 5 million units. Accordingly, the penetration rate of new iPad Pro products in the global tablet market is projected to rise from an estimated 2.5% to 3.1%.

Per TrendForce’s analysis, Apple’s launch of tablets with Mini LED display will stimulate growth in upstream–downstream parts of the Mini LED supply chain, regardless of the current conditions. Those expected to be benefited include providers of LED chips (e.g., Ennostar), probing and sorting systems (e.g., FitTech, SaulTech, and YTEC), mounting services (e.g., TSMT and Yenrich Technology), PCBs (e.g., Zheng Ding Tech and Tripod Technology), driver ICs (e.g., Parade Technologies, Novatek, and Macroblock), and light source modules (e.g., Radiant Optoelectronics and GIS).

Concerning product specifications, the new 12.9-inch iPad Pro adopts the advanced Liquid Retina XDR technology, featuring 1,000 nits of screen brightness, 1,600 nits of peak brightness, and an amazing 1 million-to 1 contrast ratio; all these features have appeared in the iPad for the first time.

TrendForce’s analyst Max Chen specified that the new 12.9-inch model’s price reflects an increase in cost, but the product does not entirely aim for high profits, suggesting that Apple is determined to establish a new market paradigm by introducing products that feature Mini LED backlight technology.

(Correspondent: Chia-Hao Wu; source of the first image: Apple Inc.)

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