After Apple skipped introducing a 120Hz ProMotion display in iPhone 12, now, rumor mills are claiming that the advanced refresh rate is coming in the next-generation iPhone 13 Pro models. The Elec reports that Samsung will supply Apple with the rigid-flexible printed circuit board (RFPCB) which connects the OLED panel to the mainboard to support a 120Hz refresh rate.
Samsung already manufactures OLED displays used in iPhone 12 series and is reported to be creating the LTPO displays for iPhone 13 Pro models. Currently used in Apple Watch, the Low-Temperature Polycrystalline Oxide (LTPO) OLED panels consume 15%-20% less power, enabling always-on display functionality on the smartwatch. Similarly, the low-energy consumption of the advanced display tech will allow Apple to introduce a high 120Hz refresh rate on iPhone 13.
iPhone 13 Pro models will ship with an LTPO OLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate
The Elec writes that:
Youngpoong had supplied RFPCB to Apple through LG Display back in 2019. But it saw its supply of boards for iPhones drop last year as Cupertino decided to have LG Display used multiplex FPCB for its OLED panels instead of RFPCB.
Meanwhile, the two higher tier iPhones this year that will use RFPCB will have low-temperature polycrystalline oxide (LTPO) thin-film transistor (TFT) OLED panels.
LTPO OLED is needed for a 120Hz refresh rate screen. These panels will be supplied exclusively by Samsung Display.
As for the shipments, it is reported that Samsung is expected to provide 110 million units of OLED panels to Apple for iPhone 12 and the upcoming iPhone 13 series this year. This claim is corroborated by another supply chain source, DigiTimes. The Taiwanese publishers wrote that:
Samsung Display and LG Display, now offering LTPS OLED displays for iPhones, are proceeding with capacity conversion to LTPO ones at their Apple-dedicated 6G OLED lines, with the conversion likely to be completed in the first half of 2021, the sources said, adding that production capacity will drop due to the added oxide step when LTPS is converted to LTPO.
Having said that, it is stated that more accurate shipment figures will be known when iPhone 13 production will starts in July 2021.