The screen has always been an area of innovation for the iPhone, and Apple is getting ready for a major overhaul this year. The next iPhone will have an OLED screen, multiple reports claim, as Apple is looking to improve display performance and quality beyond what LCD can currently offer.
However, not all 2017 iPhones will receive an OLED display, a new report indicates, with the iPhone 8 expected to be the only new model to have an OLED display.
Even if it wanted to, Apple can’t possibly find enough suppliers to provide the screen it would require to move its entire line to OLED displays this year. Guggenheim Securities analyst Robert Cihra said in a note to investors seen by Apple Insider that OLED supply constraints will actually benefit Apple in the long run.
Cihra reiterates what many others said in recent weeks, that the iPhone 8 will be the only one to get and OLED display, whereas the iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus will have an LCD screen inside. It’s not bad news for Apple, according to the analyst. He believes that spreading the upgrade to OLED over a few years will do more for Apple’s bottom line and stock price than by upgrading the entire line at once.
Chira says that the iPhone’s average sales price will go up after the OLED iPhone arrives. Fueled by the move to OLED screens, iPhone sales should grow by less than 3% in fiscal year 2017 compared to the previous year. However, iPhone growth should be at 11% a year later.
Samsung is expected to be the primary provider of OLED screens in the first year, with Apple having reportedly signed two contracts with its arch-enemy for a total of 160 million screens.
Other OLED display makers have already announced massive investments in OLED display factories, as they’re also eying Apple’s iPhone business. Other handset makers are also expected to move from LCD to OLED displays in the near future, as a direct result of Apple’s shift to OLED technology.