Apple considering change to its display technology to extend battery life?

Apple considering change to its display technology to extend battery life?
Analysis from research firm IHS Markit suggests that Apple might consider a change to a low-temperature polycrystalline oxide (LTPO) backplane, from the current low-temperature polysilicon thin-film transistor (LTPS TFT) currently used on its OLED displays. The backplane is the part of the display used to turn the pixels on and off, and is therefore responsible for the display's power consumption, resolution and refresh rates.

According to the report, Apple has filed three patents related to LTPO in 2014, 2015 and 2018. The analyst behind the report, David Hsieh, does ask an interesting question. If Apple is sourcing its OLED panels from other companies, why is it so interested in creating its own backplane system without working with its OLED suppliers? Hsieh has a few reasons for this:

  • To be more closely involved in flexible OLED component cost and technology.
  • To reduce power consumption of Apple products.
  • To achieve high electron mobility for higher resolution of its displays.
  • To better manage its display supply chain and that of its partner-display manufacturers.
Battery life could be extended anywhere from 5% to 15% using LTPO (view the image at the top of the display). But not everything about LTPO is positive at the moment. Right now, LTPO requires larger thin-film transistors, which means fewer transistors in the display substrate. That would mean lower resolution screens. And the larger photomask needed for this technology (20% larger than LTPS) requires more expensive equipment; additionally, the process of producing the components for LTPO is more complex.

According to Hsieh, Apple might audition the LTPO backplane on the smaller Apple Watch display before using the technology on the iPhone.

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32 Comments

1. MarvzIsFallen

Posts: 646; Member since: Aug 11, 2017

Great innovations are coming to my apple products.

5. lyndon420

Posts: 6276; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

Imagine how good it will be if apple actually incorporates a new radical battery tech that we all know is currently available!! Yeah they have contract agreements in place that force them to keep using lithium (dangerous) based battery tech...but when those contracts are up - well it's highly likely that apple will be one of the first to implement safe battery tech for their users.

6. worldpeace

Posts: 3049; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

As if they'll make a factory for that..

8. Finalflash

Posts: 4052; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

Don't be delusional, Apple will use the same lithium tech as everyone else because it's cheap. If they actually cared about quality they wouldn't have used low grade aluminium on the iPhone 6, would have used actual sapphire glass on their watches, tested the MacBook pro keyboards better, etc. Etc.

21. lyndon420

Posts: 6276; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

I was actually being sarcastic lol. Apple is rarely first out of the gate with anything.

29. Finalflash

Posts: 4052; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

Huh, didn't look at user lol.

19. Phullofphil

Posts: 1730; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

For one a contract don’t mean crapp. If there actually is such a thing for battery manufactures. That’s a conspiracy theory at best. If they put every technology into a phone that they possibility could you would be talking about a $2000 to $3000 phone that would not sell that well. The batteries that they have are about as safe as can be. Otherwise they would have made the charging for wired and wireless a lot faster.

27. apple-rulz

Posts: 1795; Member since: Dec 27, 2016

You should get a job with Apple and make sure they are among the first to implement safe battery tech for their users. I'm sure Apple can't afford to pay you what you currently earn, but you'd be doing us Apple users a favor, so consider it a public service.

12. GreenMan

Posts: 2669; Member since: Nov 09, 2015

Samsung's OLED displays aren't the biggest culprit of heavy power consumption on The iPhone X; it's the SoC. Apple A Series might blow Snapdragon 8xx out of the water in terms of performance; but its no where near efficient. An iPhone 8 Plus draws a whooping 9w from its minuscule 2,600mAh battery at full load; 2.52w on idle with display turned on. While The S8 Plus draws just a tad over 5.2w from its 3,500mAh battery; 1.16w on idle and 0.13w while on stand-by with 'always on display' enabled. So like I said; its not OLED Displays to blame; it's the Apple A11 SoC. Seems like someone can learn a lesson or two from Samsung and Qualcomm! Oh well, G'Day! [Source: Notebookcheck.com]

13. peace247 unregistered

"blow out of the water"...haha

14. kiko007

Posts: 7383; Member since: Feb 17, 2016

It does. Problem?

24. jacure619

Posts: 45; Member since: Aug 16, 2018

How? Show me how it blows the dragon out of the water? Geekbench? How about antutu too? Show me how it blows the dragon? I need facts and not your bias iPhone opinion.

28. darkkjedii

Posts: 30513; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Mostly on paper though (Geekbench benchmarks), real world usage these phones one up each other in performance. Most system apps open faster on the Note 9, most games on the iPhone X. RAM management is where the Note 9 stands tall though, all that RAM really shows. Overalll, two great phones, and I’m glad I own both. iOS for iPhone sorely needs true split screen multitasking though, too much power, and too big a screen not to have it.

22. Phullofphil

Posts: 1730; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

It does.

16. Sammy_DEVIL737

Posts: 1414; Member since: Nov 28, 2016

Than why does iPhone 8 Plus lasts longer than S8+?

20. Phullofphil

Posts: 1730; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

Displays on all phones draw the most power.

2. BuffaloSouce

Posts: 1074; Member since: May 01, 2017

Or they could just put a bigger battery in the damn phone...

3. Subie

Posts: 2232; Member since: Aug 01, 2015

Why not a bigger battery and more energy efficient hardware...

10. htainlintha

Posts: 73; Member since: Mar 20, 2010

Nah, they do not intend to, they just want to cut corners by putting the same small mAh battery like iph X by thinking hard for a way to reduce the screen power consumption #ggApple

23. Phullofphil

Posts: 1730; Member since: Feb 10, 2009

Year into my iPhone and it last a whole day easy with heavy use. Every android phone I’ve ever owned starts to poop out after about six months where I have to charge at least one time throughout the day

26. nepalisherpa

Posts: 331; Member since: Jul 17, 2015

Bigger battery is not always the best solution. What’s stopping one from strapping a car battery to a phone and carrying it everywhere?

4. Humanoid

Posts: 1226; Member since: Dec 11, 2017

It is easier if they add 500mAh to each new model from now. I doubt the 6.5" will have more than 2900

17. DolmioMan

Posts: 284; Member since: Jan 08, 2018

The fact they put 2600mAh in the 5.8" iPhone which is approximately the same size as the 1800mAh iPhones, they seem to be adding ~800mAh to the models, that's put the 6.5" iPhone at 3300-3500mAh. Those capacities sound possible.

7. worldpeace

Posts: 3049; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

He forgot two more reasons: - To sue others. - To get more profit.

9. drunkenjay

Posts: 1584; Member since: Feb 11, 2013

back to 326ppi displays with longer lasting batteries.

11. almostdone

Posts: 409; Member since: Sep 25, 2012

5-15% saving on the screen, overall 2-5% assuming a very generous one third of all power consumed is used by the screen. They're are far better off putting a bigger battery of 500mah. Another brilliant innovation by Apple. LOL

15. mootu

Posts: 1269; Member since: Mar 16, 2017

Just because Apple holds a patent does not mean they intend to use it. Apple actually uses less than 0.005% of the patents it applies for yearly. Tech companys try to patent every single idea they can possibly think of, the vast majority are never used.

18. may_czos

Posts: 952; Member since: Nov 22, 2014

Isn't the LTPS TFT a LCD technology? We're talking about the LCD panels, not OLEDs.

31. cheetah2k

Posts: 2108; Member since: Jan 16, 2011

Apple OLEDs must be china fakes??

32. may_czos

Posts: 952; Member since: Nov 22, 2014

Apple's OLED comes from Samsung and it's an actual OLED. Not LTPS TFT.

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