Universal Display owns majority of patents related to the commercialization of OLEDs

Rumors around the iPhone 7 started doing rounds on the Web just days after Apple launched the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus in September last year. Some reports claim that Apple will release iPhone 6S this year, followed by iPhone 7 in 2016. But others claim that both devices arrive in 2015, just not at the same time.

iPhone 7 To Use Universal Display's OLED Screen?

OLED display ideal for wearable devices

 

Know Your Mobile reports that the Cupertino company would halve its update cycle to better compete with Android rivals. It means the company may launch the iPhone 6S in June, followed by the iPhone 7 in September or October. Note that there is no official confirmation from Apple, and these are just rumors. If Cowen & Co. analyst Robert Stone is to be believed, the iPhone 7 could feature an OLED display.

In a research report, Stone reiterated an Outperform rating on OLED technology maker Universal Display. He also increased the price target from $40 to $50 after the company signed a licensing agreement with LG Display last week. Stone believes that wearable devices such as Apple Watch should increasingly use OLED because lighter, thinner and more flexible OLEDs are “ideal for wearable devices.”

Multiple vendors will be responsible for iPhone 7 display

Universal Display owns majority of patents (more than 3,000 issued and pending patents) related to the commercialization of OLEDs. It licenses the technology to other manufacturers. Cowen & Co says multiple panel makers will be responsible for the iPhone 7 display. Robert Stone said JOLED – a joint venture of Japan Display, Sony, Panasonic and Japan Innovation Network – plans to invest $635 million by 2016. Meanwhile, Apple’s biggest supplier Foxconn is also preparing to increase capacity for OLED displays.

That’s in line with a previous report from Japanese newspaper Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun, which claimed last month that the iPhone 7 will feature an OLED display. Foxconn and its subsidiary Innolux are setting up a $2.6 billion display manufacturing facility in Taiwan exclusively for Apple. The factory is expected to begin production by the end of this year.