Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has significantly increased its display panel orders from Samsung (SSNLF.PK) despite its recent efforts to shift production to other suppliers. According to NPD DisplaySearch data cited by CNET, the Korea-based manufacturer shipped more 9.7-inch panels for Apple’s current iPad model than LG Display
(NYSE:LPL) did in April and June.
NPD DisplaySearch estimates that Samsung shipped 4.1 million panels in the June quarter, an 80 percent increase over the 2.3 million panels it shipped in the March quarter. According to the market research firm, Samsung will also be manufacturing 7.9-inch displays for Apple’s upcoming iPad mini 2.
This appears to be consistent with an industry insider rumor reported by Korean site ETNews in June. The recent NPD DisplaySearch report and the unnamed sources cited by ETNews both indicated that the increased reliance on Samsung was due to quality and yield production issues that continue to plague Apple’s alternate display suppliers, AU Optronics (NYSE:AUO) and Sharp.
Earlier this month, a report from the Wall Street Journal suggested that the next iPad mini will feature a Retina display that will be supplied by Samsung. According to the Wall Street Journal’s sources, Apple originally wanted to use Sharp and LG Display exclusively, but was forced to add Samsung as a component supplier in order to guarantee a sufficient number of panels.
Apple and Samsung have had a strained working relationship ever since both companies began suing each other over patent infringement in courts around the world. Although Apple has reportedly been making moves to reduce its dependence on Samsung components, it appears that its supplier relationship with its smartphone rival will continue due to Samsung’s ability to manufacture large numbers of high-quality LCD displays.
Here’s how Apple closed out trading yesterday.
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