In mid-February, Patently Apple released a report titled, “Slowdown in South Korea’s LX Semicon chip production could affect BOE Technology’s display production for iPhones.” The report notes that “BOE is purchasing display driver ICs for the panels from South Korean chip company LX Semicon. But LX Semicon’s production volume is below the expected amount, sources said. The South Korean company, due to the lack of foundry production capacity, provides its display driver ICs Korea’s first LG display.” As South Korea battles China’s onslaught on its tech industry’s dominance in display technology and beyond, it’s no surprise that LX Semicon would rather back LG Display than BOE.
Today, South Korean tech site The Elec released a rumor report based entirely on a wild guess.
The Elec reports: Since February, BOE’s panel volume for the phone has dropped over the past four months. The original reason for the drop was the shortage of display driver ICs, which BOE procures from LX Semicon, which supplies more to LG Display [as we noted in our February report].
However, this alone does not explain the dramatic drop in BOE’s production volume, the sources said. The most likely reason it’s just the signposter probably changed the design of OLED panels, such as expanding the circuit width of the thin-film transistor, and this was discovered by Apple, the sources added.
Considering that L’Elec chose to publish a report based entirely on a “most likely“Foundation, there is no point in continuing to report their rumor. You can check out the full report here.
BOE has been fighting for years to be part of Apple’s supply chain and I don’t think they would risk changing display specs to cheat Apple. If you disagree, comment below.
Ultimately, the declining production volume of the LX Semicon and favoring LG Display may remain the key factor in preventing BOE from producing orders for Apple. Also remember that at the beginning of February, we published a report titled “In order to retain their iPhone display business with Apple, Samsung is considering a legal strategy against OLED display competitors”. When times get tough like they are today, the knives come out and the competitors go head to head. But guessing that BOE is trying to trick Apple doesn’t seem like a viable rumor.