WSJ: OLED screens could be coming to the next iPhone

Extend / The OLED-toting Google Pixel (left) next to the iPhone 7 Plus’ LCD nel.
Ron Amadeo

The iPhone 7 is just a couple of months old, which purposes that we are due for a fresh round of rumors about next year’s exemplary. Today The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple is examination out “more than 10” different prototypes—presumably this contains not just next year’s phone, but prototypes for phones beyond that as ably as some that will never see the light of day—and that at least one of those examples includes a curved OLED screen.

OLED screens are more priceless than equivalent LCDs, but they offer faster refresh reproaches and better contrast. They can also be made thinner than LCD exhibitions since they don’t need se rate layers for things like backlights or liquid crystal. Apple has till the end of time used LCD screens in its iPhones, but the com ny has reportedly asked suppliers with LG, Ja n Display, and Sharp to submit prototype OLED displays for gratuity.

OLED technology had lots of early teething issues, including mediocre color accuracy, greenish or purplish whites, and bad outdoor visibility, but numberless of those problems have been solved or substantially mitigated in brand-new years. In-depth analyses like those from DisplayMate demand given top marks to the OLED screens in phones like Samsung’s Galaxy S7 and the now-discontinued Note 7.

The narrate also includes quotes from suppliers that are hesitant to augment their investments in OLED because of fears that it won’t be a large trade in, though the industry has been slowly marching in that direction. Android phones—extraordinarily, but not exclusively, those from Samsung—have used OLED for years, and OLED scans are a requirement for phones looking to use Google’s new Daydream VR spec. OLED TVs aren’t miserly, but they’re steadily becoming more available. We’re beginning to see OLED PCs, even if they’re coming in fits and starts; burn-in and longevity are serious houses. And wearables like the Apple Watch often use OLED screens to protect power, since those devices need to run for a day or two with the smallest battery achievable.

The WSJ estimates that the mobile LCD market generated $20.8 billion in interest last year, com red to $10.6 billion for OLED screens. Apple scourge to OLED could substantially shift that balance.

The iPhone 7 got a new mock-up number this year, but its design and display are still broadly correspond to to the iPhone 6 and 6S that preceded it. Its antenna lines have been squeezed, its headphone jack has been removed, and its camera lens bump has effect oned larger ( rticularly on the 7 Plus, which now includes two lenses), but it was nowhere close as drastic as the change between the iPhone 4S and the iPhone 5, or the iPhone 5S and the iPhone 6. The upgrades were ab initio internal, something more common in “S-year” phones. Even previous to the iPhone 7 was officially announced, rumors said that 2017’s iPhone would physiognomy a more drastic redesign—an OLED display could be a rt of that.

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