LG hits snag in supplying new Apple iPhone screens

Apple may need to keep using Samsung displays for all its new phones if LG Display can't fix its manufacturing issues.

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Apple is having problems finding a second supplier for its new iPhone screens

Sarah Tew/CNET

Apple doesn't want to be so reliant on Samsung for its phone screens, but it's run into a problem. The Wall Street Journal reports that LG Display, who Apple wants to use as a second source of its OLED (organic light-emitting diode) screens in its new phones, is having manufacturing issues.

LG Display has fallen behind schedule and Apple is having second thoughts about using them. Apple's iPhone X screens are currently made by the display division of Samsung. 

"Because Samsung is Apple's competitor, it's an issue for Apple if it has to continue buying the component from Samsung," said Hiroshi Hayase, a Tokyo-based analyst at IHS Technology, to The Wall Street Journal.

LG Display is known for making larger OLED panels for televisions, but smaller screens require a different technology. 

Apple has been in the market for a new OLED supplier since last year to help reduce costs of its phones. The iPhone X prices started at $999 and up for consumers when it came out last year, while the Samsung Galaxy S9 started at $720. LG Display was recently asked to create a third round of prototypes for the new Apple phones, which is outside the norm for suppliers.

Apple and LG Display were not immediately available for comment at the time this story was published.