Apple working on micro OLED displays for AR Apple Glass headset
The AR Apple Glass headset will use micro OLED displays
Nikkei Asia reports that Apple is collaborating with long-time partner TSMC to create and develop the next generation of display technologies at a highly secretive lab in Taiwan.
TSMC is best known for manufacturing advanced iPhone and Mac chips rather than displays, but its experience with the former could serve a crucial role as Apple adopts newer tech.
The most important type of display under development is micro OLED, not to be confused with micro LED, which is built onto wafers — the substrates that chips are built on — rather than the glass substrates used on traditional LED and OLED panels.
Apple’s secretive micro OLED panels, which are less than 1-inch in size, have entered the trial production stage. However, the sources claim mass production won’t start for several years.
Apple is developing micro LED panels for its other products
In addition to the micro OLED panels, Apple is working on micro LED panels and has trial production lines running at the same facility. These are no closer to entering mass production, but rumors suggest they could be used on a future foldable iPhone.
How secretive is Apple’s development facility?
Apple is known for its secrecy — it’s one of the only smartphone manufacturers that, aside from the occasional slip, has avoided major leaks over the years — and hidden within today’s report are some details about Apple’s practices.
The top-secret facility mentioned above is reportedly located at Longtan Science Park, in the northern Taiwanese city of Taoyuan, and within a walking distance of TSMC’s chip testing plant.
Nikkei reports, who recently visited the location, say Apple’s complex consists of several unmarked buildings with no logo or address on the outside. Even inside, only a small Apple logo could be seen in the lobby.
To work on Apple’s micro OLED project, the Silicon Valley-based giant makes everyone sign an ironclad non-disclosure agreement that even prohibits them from meeting with friends or acquaintances who work in the tech sector.
This story is part of:Apple Glass AR/VR Headsets (15 updates)
10 February Apple working on micro OLED displays for AR Apple Glass headset
4 February $3,000 Apple AR/VR headset coming 2022 with eye tracking, 8K displays, much more
3 February Report calls for Apple to release LiDAR equipped VR headset with six lenses early next year
21 January Apple plans to get consumers ready for Apple Glass by launching pricey VR headset next year
20 December Apple Glass patent application sees lenses adjusting to ambient lighting