[ET NEWS] Apple has tentatively decided to reduce this year’s new OLED iPhone production to about 55 million units, almost half of the 100 million units of the current iPhone X, according to industry sources on March 22.
Apple plans to launch two OLED and one LCD model of the new iPhone this year. Sources say the company is likely to beef up production of LCD models due to the lukewarm sales of iPhone X, the first iPhone with an OLED screen.
“Slowing sales of the iPhone X seem to be affecting Apple’s business strategy,” an official from a local parts supplier told ET News on condition of anonymity. “This year, two OLED models will be launched, but the total production will remain at about 50-55 million units. That’s what I heard from Apple.”
Apple had set the sales target of the iPhone X at more than 100 million units last year. Under the plans, parts makers, including Samsung Display, the sole OLED supplier, were expanding production facilities to meet demand.
But Apple started lowering parts orders amid the slowing phone sales. The sales target was also adjusted to 90 million units in January and 75 million units in February. The company is widely rumored to stop the iPhone X production by September when new OLED models come out.
In the meantime, sources say Apple is likely to expand the production of cheaper LCD models, setting this year’s sales target at 15 million units.
Following Apple’s strategic shift, suppliers, most of whom are based in Korea, are expected to see sluggish earnings this year. The largest Samsung Display is contacting Chinese handset makers to diversify its clientele.
By Yoon Kun-il and Bae Ok-jin (benyun@etnews) (email@example.com)
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