updated 01:30 pm EDT, Fri May 27, 2011
Should streamline iPad 2 production
Chimei Innolux is indeed set to become another Apple touch sensor supplier, and will start shipping parts to Apple in June, industry sources say. The development may help Apple to streamline production of the iPad 2. Chimei is an affiliate of Foxconn, Apple's main manufacturing partner. In combination with Chimei's development of IPS flat panels, Apple should have access to a one-stop shop for iPads, the sources suggest.
Apple currently buys panels from two companies: LG Display, which acts as the primary supplier, and Samsung. The sources add that LG is expected to ship 3 million iPad panels to Apple by the end of the month, up from 2 million in April. By the third quarter of the year, LG could be up to 4 million units per month, according to claims.
Chimei is unlikely to replace either LG or Samsung. Demand for the iPad 2 remains extremely high, and Apple is already facing production difficulties. These include Japanese suppliers hit by a March 11th earthquake, and the aftermath of an explosion at Foxconn's Chengdu iPad plant.