Apple Tests New LG, Samsung LCDs

Readers may recall rumors of a double-pixel density iPad from earlier in the year. According to the Korea Times, Apple may indeed be testing new hi-res displays.

The Times claims that the iPad 3 will feature a Samsung or LG LCD display with 2,048 x 1,536 resolution, which would quadruple the number of pixels in the iPad 2, and that Apple is currently quality-testing them. This conflicts with earlier reports that there would not be a good enough yield for Apple to move to a new display.

Testing of the new screens is expected to be completed sometime in Q3. That could rain on the parade of those expecting an iPad 3 in September or October, as there would, of necessity, be some production ramp up time required.

A source close to the talks said "Apple’s upcoming iPad 3 will feature an improved display to support quad extended graphics (QXGA), a display resolution of 2048×1536 pixels with a 4:3 aspect ratio to provide full high definition (HD) viewing experience. Apple has traditionally preferred to use the same providers of the same parts for the same device, even as they evolve to different versions. I don’t see any fundamental change to that approach."

Both LG and Samsung are able to use a technique based on the use of low temperature polysilicon to create these high-pixel density displays. If Apple is able to ship iPads with these new LCDs, it will be able to claim the marketing puffery of "retina displays" on the iPad as well as the iPhone

It continues to be amusing to watch Samsung and Apple in their on-again, off-again relationship. Apple is a huge customer of Samsung's, but at the same time, it has sued Samsung over the similarity of several of its devices to iDevices.

In fact, Kim Byeong-ki, an analyst at Kium Securities, said that Samsung will make money off of Apple with these tablets, but will also hurt itself at the same time. "Apple will be looking to boost the shipments of its upcoming iPad to distance itself further from tablet rivals like Samsung."