The Chinese electronic components firm BOE is reportedly still awaiting Apple’s approval to manufacture OLED panels for the upcoming iPhone 14, and is at risk of losing the 30 million orders it had previously anticipated.
This is despite reports indicating that Apple is set to produce 150 million OLED panels for the new smartphone, up from the 140 million it had originally intended.
According to a report Friday from The Elec, a design problem is responsible for the doubts about BOE’s order for the new iPhone, the company having earlier this year been “caught” altering the circuit width of the thin film transistors on the OLED panels it manufactured for the iPhone 13.
The Elec cited “people familiar with the matter” as its source for this claim, adding that BOE’s design change “was done without Apple’s approval in a likely bid to increase the yield rate”.
It is apparently because of this that BOE’s 30 million OLED panel orders might be switched by Apple to rival suppliers Samsung Display and LG Display instead.
The report by The Elec said that BOE did send “a C-level executive” and employees to Cupertino’s headquarters after the incident, to explain their reasoning for changing the transistors’ circuit width.
However, while they also reportedly asked Apple to give BOE the green light to produce OLED panels for the iPhone 14, they “didn’t receive a clear response”.
It seems that we can expect the production of display panels for the new phone to begin no earlier than June.
It is anticipated that Samsung Display will supply the OLED panels for the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max, while LG Display has been tipped to provide LTPO TFT OLED panels for the 14 Pro Max.