Apple’s microLED gambit: up, up and away or ‘crash and burn’?

By Junko Yoshida from the Ojo & Yoshida Report – In an interview with The Ojo-Yoshida Report, Yole Intelligence’s senior analyst Eric Virey, a microLED technology expert and a veteran Apple watcher, cautioned, “Things can still go wrong that could completely derail the project.”

What’s at stake

A smartphone behemoth like Apple might seek to develop its own unique display technology, thereby allowing it to expand and control its own supply chain. Apple has grasped a first-mover advantage on an emerging display technology called microLED. Apple may even be committed to manufacturing and assembling its own displays — at least initially. That’s a big step. Is it a bold move or overreach?

Apple has much riding on its decade-old pursuit of microLEDs, a display technology in which microscopic LEDs form individual pixel elements. Along with resolution, micro-LEDs offer also offer power savings critical to mobile devices.

 If successful, Apple will have a one-of-a-kind display technology, a new supply chain and a fresh ecosystem stretching across the globe.

On the other hand, if the technology proves too expensive, too hard to manufacture, or difficult to scale for smartphones, the failure won’t just be Apple’s. It could also bring down others pursuing microLEDs. If microLED leader Apple surrenders, others will likely follow.

The recent tech media frenzy over microLED technology underscores reporters’ interest in Apple’s new display technology and its competition with smartphone rival Samsung. Internet chatter views Apple’s success with micro-LED technology as a fait accompli.

Not so fast… Full analysis

Related articles

CES 2023 display review

For the first time in years, I observed CES from a distance, missing a chance to co-mingle with the 115,000 people or so who attended this year, but still, I had many eyes reporting to me what they saw on the exhibit floor and in the private suites… Full article

A decade later, Apple’s microLED Smartwatch!

Back in April 2022, Osram announced the construction of a 800M euro microLED fabs. For Yole Intelligence analysts, it was just the confirmation of a prediction from our previous microLED reports that Apple was going to collaborate with Osram to ramp up manufacturing of microLED smartwatch displays in 2024. Discover today the analysis of Yole Intelligence’s senior analyst, Eric Virey... Full article