This year, Samsung Electronics of Seoul, South Korea, intends to increase production of its next-generation OLED smartphone display panels by more than 50%, according to a Nikkei article. The increased production is to supply Apple and other smartphone producers who are scrambling to update their devices. The company expects to spend about 8 trillion won ($6.82 billion) in 2016 to boost capacity at a subsidiary’s plant. This boost is reportedly the equivalent of well over 200 million for smartphone OLED display panels.
Samsung already holds a near-monopoly on small OLED display panels. Apple approached the company to supply such displays for an upcoming version of its iPhone. According to the article, Apple previously told parts suppliers that an OLED smartphone was in scheduled for release in 2018, but now the company plans to have a partial 2017 release with an OLED-display smartphone. Growing OLED production will account for about 80% of Samsung’s capital investment in its panel business this year. Samsung is thought to be currently capable of producing OLED display panels for the equivalent of much more than 300 million smartphone screens annually.