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LG Display plans production upgrade to make 2022 ProMotion iPhone displays

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LG Display is considering the purchase of new equipment to produce LTPO displays, a decision that could allow it to supply Apple with ProMotion-supportive screens for future iPhone models.

LG Display and Samsung Display are Apple's main screen suppliers for its iPhone range, with Samsung largely providing the lion's share of display panels. With Apple allegedly shifting to use 120Hz ProMotion displays in some models, this has apparently pushed LG to make some changes to its production.

Previously rumored in November 2020, a report from The Elec on Monday claims LG Display is in talks with display equipment producer Avaco over the specifications of hardware known as "sputters." The equipment would be used in the production of low-temperature polycrystalline oxide (LTPO) thin-film transistor (TFT) OLED screens.

Sputters are vacuum deposition machinery that accelerates ionized argon gas into a target material. That material falls onto glass to form a very thin layer, which is also transparent and conductive.

Apple is rumored to be using LTPO in some of the displays in the "iPhone 13" lineup, as it enables the high refresh rates needed for ProMotion. Currently, Samsung is the only one out of the two iPhone display suppliers who is making the LTPO screens for the smartphone.

Using the new equipment, LG is apparently planning to convert its existing OLED lines so it can supply Apple with similar displays in 2022. However, LG won't be buying the equipment until Apple approves the equipment.

This seems to be quite likely to occur, as Avaco supplied LTPO TFT sputters to LG for OLED panel production for the Apple Watch.

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