Foxconn wants a piece of Apple’s future MicroLED plans

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Theater Mode finally makes its way to Apple Watch in watchOS 3.2 beta 1.
Apple is interested in MicroLED tech for future Apple Watches -- among other things.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple is reportedly going all-in on MicroLED displays, and long-time supplier Foxconn wants to get in on the action!

According to a new report, the Foxconn Group recently took a 7.32 percent share in the company Epileds Technologies, and aims to soon buy anoter 20 million shares to become its largest shareholder. Epileds is one of only a couple of Taiwan-based LED firms that have valuable RGB technological capabilities key to MicroLED technology.

Although Epileds does more than just work with MicroLED technology, this was supposedly what drove Foxconn to get involved.

It’s not yet clear what Foxconn aims to do with its MicroLED tech. Foxconn works with a large number of clients beside Apple. Nonetheless, this report comes at a time when Apple is seemingly highly interested in this technology.

Apple’s MicroLED plans

According to a recent report, Apple is aiming to use MicroLED displays in future Apple Watches, Macs and even an as-yet-unreleased wearable device, which could be Apple’s augmented reality glasses. The advantage of MicroLED displays is that they have the potential to make devices slimmer, brighter and less power-hungry.

Apple reportedly already operates a secret manufacturing plant in California where it produces test MicroLED displays. This plant is a 62,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Santa Clara, roughly a 15-minute drive from Apple Park. It employs around 300 engineers.

Nonetheless, to actually bring product to market Apple will need to work with suppliers and manufacturers capable of producing at high volume. Apple is supposedly working with supplier Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) on these displays. It is also said to be lining up to work with Taiwan’s PlayNitride, which recently gained gained approval to invest $17.1 million in a new MicroLED production facility.

Given that Foxconn has been working with Apple very successfully for a couple of decades, it makes sense that the company would want to be a part of Apple’s future plans. Based on this latest piece of news, it certainly seems like Foxconn’s not hanging around, either!

Source: Digitimes