South Korean media outlet TheElec reported on Friday that due to the continuing global shortage of computer chips, Chinese display giant BOE is facing production difficulties with its OLED panels for Apple’s iPhone.
The shortage will affect BOE’s production this month and next month, sources said. BOE has procured display driver ICs for the panels from South Korean chip firm LX Semicon. But LX Semicon’s production volume is falling short of the planned amount.
Due to a lack of production capacity at chip foundries, LX Semicon is supplying display driver ICs first to LG Display, which is another one of its customers besides BOE.
As a result, BOE expects its production of OLED panels to drop from 3 million units to 2 million units next month. However, Apple has already ordered up to 10 million OLED panels from BOE for the iPhone in the first half of 2022.
According to another source, BOE had planned to ship more than 40 million OLED panels for the iPhone this year. Now they are unlikely to reach this target, and by the end of this year, their final shipments will be closer to 30 million units.
Nevertheless, BOE is still expected to expand its share in Apple’s OLED panel supply chain, as it will provide 6.06-inch low-temperature polycrystalline silicon (LTPS) thin-film transistor (TFT) OLED panels for the upcoming iPhone 14 series.