February was full of rumors regarding the Apple Watch Ultra switching to a microLED display in the near future. Now, the latest DigiTimes report (via MacRumors) says the Taiwanese supply chain publication also expects Apple’s pricier Apple Watch to feature microLED technology in the future, which will eventually expand to iPhone, iPad, and Mac models.
DigiTimes report says Apple has been actively developing microLED technology since it bought LuxVue in 2014. Due to production challenges and high manufacturing costs, the Cupertino firm will first introduce this new display with the Apple Watch Ultra. Making a parallel, this is why Apple added the OLED technology first to the Apple Watch to expand to other products later.
For the first generation of this display, European company OSRAM will be the primary supplier of microLED chips for Apple, while Taiwan’s Epistar could become an additional supplier by 2026-2027.
As of now, DigiTime corroborates other reports that the new Apple Watch Ultra with microLED will launch around 2024 and 2025.
Rumors about the microLED Apple Watch Ultra started with an analysis by Haitong Intl Tech Research analyst Jeff Pu. According to his note, Pu expects Apple Watch sales to drop in 2023 due to a “lack of significant spec upgrade.” He says this new miniLED Apple Watch Ultra will have a 2.1-inch display, up from the 1.93-inch on the current model.
Display analyst Ross Young and Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman also expect Apple to introduce the microLED Apple Watch Ultra by 2025.
For 2023, rumors about new features to Apple Watch models are still sparse. Apple is working on blood glucose level and blood pressure sensors, but it’s unclear whether these features will land this year or need a few more years of development. Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman believes this will be another mild year for Apple’s smartwatch lineup, apart from a new, faster processor.