Hyung-soo Lee and Bo-kyung Moon, of Korea’s ETNews report that Apple has dropped Taiwanese display supplier AUO from its list of suppliers for the iPad mini 2. They note that AUO has supplied LCD panels for the iPad mini along with LG Display and Sharp, but could not secure orders from Apple since it had failed to develop an high penetration LCD for iPad Mini 2.
Lee and Moon also say industry insiders are interested in whether Samsung Display can replace AUO. LG Display has already secured an order from Apple, they report, adding that Sharp seems to have had smooth sailing in getting approval from Apple as a supplier for the iPad mini 2 despite some product quality problems, because it is the only supplier of oxide semiconductor LCD panels. Oxide semiconductor LCD has an advantage of saving electricity.
The reporters observe that Apple appears to be planning to use oxide semiconductor LCDs in the iPad mini 2 despite initial low production yield, because of their power-saving electricity. Last year, AUO started to supply panels to Apple thanks to its price competitiveness, but Lee and moon say it wasn’t not convince Apple to give it a slice of the iPad mini2 OEN pie becauses it failed to meet supply deadlines or to develop an LCD with high penetration rate.
Also, thay obsercve that improved relations between Samsung Display and Apple seems to be another factor for AOU being dropped. “Samsung Display is known to have developed an LCD sample for iPad mini 2. The company may be able to secure more order than Sharp did, if it can stabilize production yields”, an unnamed source from the LCD industry is cited commenting.
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