Apple would be interested in a new OLED panel technology, combining a rigid glass layer and a flexible plastic layer, for its 2024 iPad tablets.
Apple is currently working on a future generation of iPads that would benefit from OLED screens, instead of the current IPS LCD screens. For the moment, the manufacturer’s only advance for the display of its tablets is to have changed the backlighting using miniLED technology in order to offer deeper blacks and brighter whites. But Apple could create a surprise by breaking away from traditional OLED and opting for hybrid OLED technology.
This technology combines two layers: the first rigid in glass and the second flexible in polyamide, a form of plastic. The polyamide layer is cheaper to produce and easier to use, but may exhibit warping effects. These effects are not visible on small screens of 6 inches, for example those of the iPhone, but become obvious on larger screens, from 10 inches.
Samsung and LG are working on hybrid OLED panels
According to the Korean site The Elec, the use of a layer of glass would provide a solution and would make it possible to design brighter screens, with a longer lifespan. The Display divisions of Samsung and LG are currently developing a glass substrate for use in hybrid OLED panels. Both manufacturers are working on 2 mm thick substrates, instead of 5 mm in current OLED screens. However, this type of hybrid panel could cost Apple significantly more than IPS panels and therefore have repercussions on the price of Apple tablets. Note that the manufacturer is also interested in dry etching technology, which makes it possible to correct certain defects of traditional OLED screens.
Apple should launch its first iPad with an OLED display, probably a Pro model, in 2024. It will therefore not be present in the announcements of new models which should take place in October. And in the more distant future, the manufacturer could opt for microLED technology in its tablets.