Apple teams up with TSMC to develop micro OLED display technology

Posted on Thursday, February 11 2021 @ 10:03 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
Nikkei Asia writes Apple has picked TSMC as its partner to develop a second in-house display technology. At a facility in Taiwan, engineers are working on micro OLED display technology, the next big advance in display technology for AR headsets. Unlike conventional LCD or OLED panels, micro OLED panels are not made on glass substrates. Instead, the displays are built directly onto wafers.

Displays made using micro OLED technology promise to be much thinner and energy-efficient than existing panels. The micro OLED project is still several years away from mass production -- the report suggests this will be used for future augmented reality products that require small but high-quality displays:
Apple is collaborating with its longtime chip supplier TSMC because micro OLED displays are not built on glass substrates like the conventional LCD screens in smartphones and TVs, or OLED displays used in high-end smartphones. Instead, these new displays are built directly onto wafers -- the substrates that semiconductors are fabricated on -- allowing for displays that are far thinner and smaller and use less power, making them more suitable for use in wearable AR devices, according to sources familiar with the projects.
Besides micro OLED, Apple is also working on micro LED technology. If all goes well, this technique could be used for future generations of iPad, Apple Watch, and MacBook products. Micro LED screens do not require a backlight module and are significantly thinner than LCD panels. Furthermore, micro LED promises high color contrast as well as the ability to make curved or foldable screens.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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