Apple might have started June on a high note with WWDC 2019, but it looks like trouble might be looming on the horizon for the American tech giant.
According to a recent report by ETNews — one of the most credible sources for Apple insider news — Apple allegedly owes “hundreds of billions of won” to its supplier Samsung Display (yes, that Samsung) as a penalty for not buying as many OLED displays as they initially agreed to.
To put things in perspective, 100 billion won is approximately 117 million Singapore dollars.
According to an industry observer, Apple “demanded” for Samsung to build a factory that would manufacture OLED displays exclusively for iPhones. This factory was supposed to produce 100 million screens a year, but “sluggish” sales for the iPhone X have reduced that demand.
The factory is now reportedly working at 50% capacity, and operating profits have dropped from 5.7 trillion won in 2017 to 2.62 trillion won in 2018.
Apple and Samsung Display have been discussing ways to circumvent the penalty, and this is where things get interesting for consumers.
One of the more notable solutions is for Apple to start integrating OLED displays into other products in their catalogue, meaning that the next generation of MacBooks and iPads could be fitted with the high-end screens for the first time.
Of course, this is all just speculation at this point, and considering that earlier rumours suggested that the next generation of MacBooks and iPads would be utilising mini-led technology, it’ll be more than a few years before this has a chance of coming to fruition.
And while OLED-everything sounds great on paper, it might also end up becoming a “be careful what you wish for” situation — OLED screens are an expensive component (explaining why iPhone X sales were low to begin with), and might possibly drive up the already-high price of Apple products.
Header Image Credit: Apple