LG is dominating the smartwatch market, but not with its own devices. A new report from DisplaySearch reveals that the South Korean company produces 90 percent of the displays used in smartwatches this year.
It turns out the company’s success is mostly due to the Apple Watch. LG scored an exclusive deal to provide the OLED panels for the new wearable device, which is expected to sell millions of units in its first run. As a result, LG Display pulled in $186 million for its smartwatch panel business in Q1 2015; total revenue for the entire smartwatch display market in the same quarter was $240 million.
Following LG’s lead is Samsung, which makes its own smartwatches but holds just 3.1 percent of the display market. It’s unclear exactly why Apple chose one South Korean company over the other, though it may have something to do with the bitter legal battles between Cupertino and Samsung.
Even so, the Galaxy-maker may still be able to turn things around. Samsung recently assembled a 200-person team focused entirely on designing display technology for Apple. For now, those efforts are mostly focused on iPads and MacBooks, but it could easily expand into other categories in the future.
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