Apple set to drive OLED display adoption in mobile PCs

Apple set to drive OLED display adoption in mobile PCs

Market news |
By Peter Clarke

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The market for mobile PCs with organic light emitting diode (OLED) displays is set to more than double in 2024 and continue climbing through 2028, according to Omdia.

The market researcher reckons that 3.7 million tablet computers and 3.4 million notebook PCs with OLED displays shipped in 2023; 7.1 million in total. In 2024 Omdia reckons that the numbers will rise to 12.1 million tablets with OLED displays and 5.1 million notebook computers for a total of 17.2 million.

The rise will continue through 2028 and in that year 72.3 million tablet and notebook computers will ship but still only a 14 percent penetration rate in the total mobile PC display market. 

Mobile PC OLED panel shipment forecast. Source: Omdia.

OLED displays have been in these markets in low numbers for a few years but the market is dominated by liquid crystal displays which can occupy a much lower price-point due to volume manufacturing cost efficiencies. And the OLED displays will be expensive costing up to $300 per panel. However, OLED panels offer benefits, such as a thin and light form factor, faster response time compared with LCDs, and better contrast ratio and color performance.

Nonetheless Omdia sees 2024 as a transition year due to the adoption of OLED displays for mobile PC by Apple. The iPadPro with OLED display will be introduced in 2024. Samsung’s hybrid OLED displays will be built in its Gen 6 fab. LG Display’s E6 Gen 6 flexible OLED fab and Samsung Display’s A3 Gen 6 flexible OLED fab will be used for mass production. Both fabs were originally designed for smartphone display applications but have been revamped to facilitate larger panel production.

Omdia reckons Apple now plans to extend OLED displays to the iPad Air and MacBook Pro in 2026 and to the iPad Mini and MacBook Air in 2027.

The high price for higher performance display is the reason Apple will introduce OLED in its premium products first but as volume increases it is expected that pricing will reduce allowing the improved display to be used across a broader set of products.

That said for many notebook and tablet computer makers’ models the LCD will continue to be good enough.

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