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Chimei cut out of supply loop for iPad 3 displays

updated 07:45 am EDT, Fri August 19, 2011

CMI has trouble matching iPad 3 display goals

Chimei Innolux has been locked out of making iPad 3 displays for the near future, part suppliers outlined in a claim on Friday. Although it's currently making iPad 2 screens, it has supposedly been unable to make the 2048x1536 iPad 3 LCDs. The Taiwan firm was said by Digitimes to have problems with light transmittance in the higher-density display, which needs a stronger backlight, as well as yield problems.

Chimei has been having its own problems with IPS panels and didn't get into mass production until this summer. Apple may have still set a high barrier as LG and Samsung have also faced a "challenge," although it's characterized as one that has been solvable. Sharp has been brought on as one of the suppliers.

The exclusion isn't a permanent one and could be addressed if Chimei improvies its yields. It has spent $27.6 million to $34.5 million on improving its plants. Apple also tends to bring on extra suppliers in mid-cycle to hope with demand and might turn to Chimei first.

Most expect the iPad 3 to ship in early spring 2012 and that it may be one of the first tablets to have a truly sharp display. Apple is in a race with Samsung, which will likely have a 2560x1600 Galaxy Tab sometime next year.

by MacNN Staff



  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Those Retina panels are likely

    going to be expensive and will drive up the cost of any device they're used in. Samsung is already having problems selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 so a model that costs more is going to be even harder to sell. Apple would be able to absorb the costs and keep the iPad's price the same or just a little bit more expensive. Apple will still have the upper hand in selling a Retina Display-class tablet.

  1. WaltFrench

    Joined: Dec 1969



    They're obviously difficult to produce, and low yields/lousy results mean costly, all right.

    But once you get it worked out, especially if you co-own the technology and/or production lines, then you get the cost down (the actual amount of silicon, etc. is quite similar) PLUS you're the only kid on your block with one.

    The DisplayMate comparison of tablets gave the nod to Samsung's, except that they cranked the color saturation to "Ueber-garish," leaving the field to Apple. If Apple can pull off 4X the pixels (they DO have the CPU/GPU moxie to do this) it could be like the competitors releasing iPad competitors just as iPad2 came out, all over again.

    PS: DisplayMate's excellent article dismissed a "Retina" iPad as very costly of CPU and battery.

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