Samsung Display cuts Apple ties, rebounds with competitors

iPad 3 screen
Paid by the pixel

Samsung Display announced Monday that it plans to cut all ties with Apple, terminating its contract with the iPhone maker and no longer providing LCD displays for Apple's various iDevices.

Samsung Display broke off from Samsung and became a totally separate company in early 2012, so this rift likely has nothing to do with Apple and Samsung's ongoing apocalypse-sized patent war.

Rather, sources cited by The Korea Times claimed that the breakup has more to do with lessening returns on displays shipped to the Cupertino company.

"We are unable to supply our flat-screens to Apple with huge price discounts," said what the Times' called a senior Samsung source.

Price per pixel

According to the Korean paper, research firm DisplaySearch reported that the price per pixel of displays used on Apple's devices has decreased by more than half.

The researchers said the "new iPad," referring to the 2048 x 1536 third-generation iPad (and not the iPad mini that will likely be announced on Tuesday), sports 3.14 million pixels priced at $.00003 per pixel.

Compare that to the iPad 2's price of $.000063 per pixel, and it becomes clear where Samsung Display's beef may originate.

The Korea Times' report claimed that Apple has been relying more and more on Samsung's cheaper rivals, lowering its rates as it moves away from Samsung Display.

A sloppy breakup

As of the end of the first half of 2012, Samsung Display was reportedly Apple's top LCD supplier, with more than 15 million displays shipped to Cupertino.

"But Samsung shipped less than three million to Apple during the third quarter of this year and we expect the quarterly shipment in the fourth quarter to fall to some 1.5 million," said the Samsung source, whom The Korea times said "is directly involved."

"Samsung has already cut our portion of shipments to Apple and next year we will stop shipping displays," said the source.

Samsung Display plans to ramp up shipments to Amazon and Samsung Electronics' handset division to make up for the loss of Apple's business.

Apple, meanwhile, will likely turn to LG Display and Sharp, the iPad maker's second- and third-biggest screen suppliers, respectively, with 12.5 million and 2.8 million shipped during the first half of 2012.

As with even the sloppiest of breakups, both parties will likely come out fine in the end.

Via The Korea Times

Michael Rougeau

Michael Rougeau is a former freelance news writer for TechRadar. Studying at Goldsmiths, University of London, and Northeastern University, Michael has bylines at Kotaku, 1UP, G4, Complex Magazine, Digital Trends, GamesRadar, GameSpot, IFC, Animal New York, @Gamer, Inside the Magic, Comic Book Resources, Zap2It, TabTimes, GameZone, Cheat Code Central, Gameshark, Gameranx, The Industry, Debonair Mag, Kombo, and others.

Micheal also spent time as the Games Editor for, and was the managing editor at GameSpot before becoming an Animal Care Manager for Wags and Walks.