Apple has reportedly ordered 100 million OLED displays from Samsung for its 2017 iPhone. The two companies are said to have entered into a three-year deal worth $2.59 billion.
Countless rumors have claimed Apple will finally adopt OLED displays for the iPhone in either 2017 or 2018, and that Samsung could be one of its suppliers. Now several news outlets in South Korea, including The Korea Herald and Daily Economic News, say a deal is done.
Starting in May 2017, Samsung will reportedly supply Apple with 100 million OLED displays annually for three years for a 5.5-inch iPhone. Presumably, that means the iPhone 7s Plus will be the first handset to get one.
It could be that the smaller 4.7-inch iPhone 7s will switch to OLED at the same time, using displays from another manufacturer, such as LG Display or Sharp. It seems unlikely Apple would make this change for only one iPhone model.
The benefits of switching to OLED include greater power efficiency, brighter colors, and sharper images. Unlike LCD displays, which Apple currently uses in the iPhone, OLED displays don’t need a backlight, either, so Apple could make its bezels slimmer (finally!).
There are some downsides to OLED, too — like shorter lifespans — but they are generally considered to be better than anything else for mobile devices like smartphones with where the technology is at today. Apple is already using OLED in Apple Watch.
Some reports have suggested that Apple’s first OLED displays will be curved, and could measure 5.8 inches in size. However, these reports seem to suggest that there won’t be an increase in size — at least not yet.