A report about the display industry claims that the 12.9-inch iPad Pro with mini LED is likely to get killed off if OLED versions arrive in 2024.
The idea of an iPad Pro with an OLED display has been floated for quite a while, with rumors insisting that such a model will arrive sometime in 2024. When it arrives, it may be the case that Apple will be going all-in on OLED, and stop offering mini LED versions altogether.
A TrendForce report seen by AppleInsider discussing mini LED shipments talks about how displays using the products will continue to see growth until 2027. The report mentions how the display industry's mini LED panel shipments for 2024 are estimated to be 13.79 million units following a 2023 lull, with growth anticipated to reach 31.5 million units by 2027.
Down to a category level, under IT applications, mini LED monitor shipments are estimated at 296 thousand units for 2023, across multiple areas. As the market for OLED monitors saturates and mini LED's costs continue to decrease, there is an expected growth phase for between 2026 and 2027.
However, for mini LED tablets and notebooks, there are "potential threats" from OLED, and the market is "expected to reach an inflection point this year," the report states.
One of the threats is the iPad Pro, with the report claiming the 12.9-inch iPad Pro model with mini LED is "expected to be discontinued in 2024," with OLED replacing it. This will apparently make shipment volumes for mini LED-based tablets decrease by 15.6% year-on-year.
If rumors about Apple's OLED iPad Pro upgrade in 2024 are true, it does make sense that the company would cut down on its orders for mini LED panels, since it would be using OLED in the iPad Pro instead.
Oddly, the report doesn't mention the 11-inch iPad Pro at all, so it is unclear if it believes that the variant will continue with mini LED or will switch to OLED. Rumors seem to go along with the OLED switch narrative.
Meanwhile, the shipment volume of mini LED notebooks will go down by approximately 39% year-on-year in 2024. However, the report doesn't namecheck products like the MacBook Pro lineup.
The mini LED market does have other factors to rely on other than Apple's iPad Pro.
For the TV sector, the trending lower cost of mini LED production means there is a positive forecast for 2024, including 6.21 million shipments as a 53.5% year-on-year increase. By 2027, shipments in the field are projected to reach 24.4 million units.
The automotive market is also an area with a positive outlook, with a "gradually expanding" adoption of the display technology.