iPhone 14 Pro Max display supply stunner reveals Dynamic Island cutout challenges
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LG is on probation as an Apple iPhone 14 Pro Max display supplier, reports Korean media, as it ran into troubles while piercing the holes for the new Dynamic Island cutout on the Pro models, claim The Elec's sources.
It also couldn't master the thin-film encapsulation of the latest LTPO display technology with high refresh rate that the iPhone 14 Pro Max and iPhone 14 Pro sport. This is why Apple is now running its panels through a validation phase yet again with a few of the mask components changed for a more precise manufacturing. If LG fails again, Samsung will have to pick up the slack for at least a month longer as LG goes through another two-week testing and validation efforts with Apple.
For the iPhone 14 Pro series, Samsung uses its precise HIAA (Hole-in-Active-Area) method, according to industry insiders, as it is currently the most advanced OLED hole-punching technology so far. HIAA employs laser drilling between the OLED deposition and thin-film encapsulation (TFE) production steps. The process is more challenging to do with Samsung's flexible OLED displays that use plastic instead of glass substrate, as on the iPhone 14 Pro models, as the hole's circumference has to be sealed separately against oxygen and moisture to prevent LED deterioration.
Only Samsung can make Dynamic Island iPhone displays at the moment
This is why Samsung works with the best equipment for the task, the Philoptics laser-cutting system and Wonik IPS vacuum chambers and Philoptics alone said it will be supplying about $27 million worth of equipment to Samsung Display's Vietnam factory that makes the iPhone displays in the next year or so.
The Philoptics and Wonik IPS machines shipment increase is not because of some change in Apple's initial sales forecast for its Pro models but rather because none of its other display suppliers can make LTPO panels with Dynamic Island cutouts as Samsung can at the moment.
The iPhone 14 Pro Max screen is the "brightest" in a phone, as it employs Samsung's latest M12 OLED display generation technology that made a cameo on the Galaxy Z Fold 4 and brings about brighter panels with less power consumption.
It is not clear if LG's RS-L LTPO OLED manufacturing technology that it reportedly uses for the iPhone 14 Pro Max can reach such brightness heights as is, or if LG has had to enhance it to match Samsung's know-how, but, given that Samsung is allegedly tasked to make nearly 20 million more iPhone 14 series screens, the Pro models may be getting Samsung displays for the whole of the initial batch sales to early adopters.