iPhone maker wants LG and Samsung to build crumple-proof foldable screens

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Future iterations of Apple’s foldable iPhone might make use of a hybrid OLED display, with the company emphasizing the avoidance of the crease present in certain foldable smartphones.

The fact that they already have folding displays or will get folding displays is the distinguishing feature of products like Apple’s speculated “iPhone Fold,” a hypothetical folding iPad, and Samsung’s Galaxy Fold series. However, that particular functionality might lead to issues that harm the device’s aesthetic appeal.

When folded, very flexible displays may develop some crumpling. The Elec’s sources claim that Apple is making efforts to prevent this by requiring display manufacturers LG and Samsung to create hybrid OLED screens.

Glass, which is often somewhat stiff, serves as the substrate for a standard rigid OLED display. A plastic substrate that is also enclosed for additional protection is frequently used in flexible OLED panels.

The OLED screen, which also makes use of the thin-film encapsulation technique, would be housed in a hybrid panel made of both glass and plastic.

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Polyimide varnishes are applied to a glass substrate during production, and the glass is then removed using lasers to generate the plastic layer, which is another aspect of the issue. The heat from the laser can deform that plastic layer, resulting in crumples.

Samsung Display and LG are developing an incredibly thin glass substrate that might be used in a hybrid OLED panel in response to Apple’s request. Instead of the usual 5mm thickness, the substrate would be 2mm thin, making it more flexible.

The display technology may not enter Apple’s supply chain for a number of years because it is still in research and not at a point where it is ready for commercialization. In terms of potential applications, a source claims that a hybrid OLED screen would be better suited for a folding iPad because the crumples are less evident on smaller displays than they are on bigger ones.

Apple is attempting to address challenges with foldable displays in a variety of ways, including this hybrid strategy. It was claimed in May that Apple was interested in an OLED display that was thinner since it didn’t need a polarizing layer.

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