Korean media TheElec reported on Thursday that Chinese display maker BOE is negotiating with Chinese smartphone brand Honor to manufacture a two-stack tandem OLED panel to apply to a smartphone planned for later this year.
The OLED panel has two emission layers, which aims to reduce power consumption by approximately 30%. This means the smartphone can pack a smaller battery which will allow the phone to be thinner in design.
Honor wanted the two-stack tandem OLED panel to have a low-temperature polycrystalline oxide (LTPO) thin-film transistor (TFT) technology, but BOE rejected the application, opting instead to have the panel use the low-temperature polycrystalline silicon (LTPS) TFT it already mass produces. The decision is likely due to the technology only contributing to around 5% to 10% reduction in power consumption, when a two-stack tandem would be already be reducing power consumption by 30% by BOE’s estimation.
BOE is planning to use the third phase line at its B7 factory line in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, to manufacture the two-stack tandem OLED panel. B7 had been used to manufacture OLED panels for iPhones in the past, but this duty has shifted more to the B11 line.
At present, the B7 has a capacity of 16,000 Gen 6 substrates per month. Since it is designed for single stack OLED panels, those with only one emission layer, the application of two-stack tandem OLED panels will likely cut this capacity by half.
TheElec pointed out that BOE’s ultimate aim with its collaboration with Honor is likely to secure experience to manufacture two-stack tandem OLED panels aimed at iPads. It also remains to be seen whether BOE will succeed in commercially launching a two-tack tandem OLED panel aimed at smartphones with Honor.