back to article Apple hands iPad screen contract to rival Samsung

Apple has handed the manufacturing deal for iPad screens to its patent spat rival – Samsung – after LG Display and Sharp failed to deliver on the ultra-high-res screens needed for the new tablet. The new iPad's 3.1 million pixel screen is its biggest selling point. But it seems as if Samsung is the only company capable of …


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  1. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    And this would be why Apple's suddenly backing down on Android?

    That is all.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: And this would be why Apple's suddenly backing down on Android?


      Samsung have been making apple kit for years, even when they've been suing the pants off each other

    2. g e

      Re: And this would be why Apple's suddenly backing down on Android?

      I'd think Samsung display division is fairly independent of Mobile but now they know they're the sole supplier *capable* of making the stuff proper-job, who knows...

      1. Manu T

        Re: And this would be why Apple's suddenly backing down on Android?

        Perhaps it would tone down Apple's arrogant attitude somewhat. Although I don't find Samsung a better corporation (on the contrary).

        Anyway, most Android-ODM's have already confirmed to build LESS android devices and concentrate more on WP7.x devices for their 2012-lineup. So whatever happens between Apple and Samsung, the market penetration of Android devices will be far less in 2012 then it was previously.

        So mission accomplished!

        1. Anonymous Coward

          Re: And this would be why Apple's suddenly backing down on Android?

          "Anyway, most Android-ODM's have already confirmed to build LESS android devices and concentrate more on WP7.x devices for their 2012-lineup."

          Where can I get some of what you are smoking?

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: And this would be why Apple's suddenly backing down on Android?

          That would be FEWER?

        3. N13L5

          Re: And this would be why Apple's suddenly backing down on Android?

          hahaha WP7...?? people are making some, mostly because of M$ giving them a break on their patent trolling as long as they make WP7 stuff... only, nobody buys that shit. <2% market share last time I checked. Good riddance Microsoft...

          As for Samsung, at least they actually make stuff, unlike Apple, and they are world leaders in a good number of technologies. I don't much like their support, but I can respect their Chaebol power...

          And they rightfully won the Smartphone of the year award with the Galaxy SII, my iPhone sits in a drawer since I got that.

          I think Tim Cook is a more reasonable and practical man than Jobs ever was, so we might see all this ridiculous and tiresome litigation recede in favor of more negotiation.

          The future still looks questionable, with Apple filing new ridiculously silly patents daily. Prior art and obviousness seems to be lost on the patent office when it comes to software.

          Don't see how silly patents on in-app payment buttons, special finger motions and parental spending control should be able to go up against real science stuff like display technology, that actually costs money to research.

  2. Steve Todd

    Not a state of play that will continue

    Apple like to source screens from multiple vendors. If one has production issues they can keep shipping with parts from the others. Ramping the new iPad up to full production will require more than just Samsung and as fast as Apple can get the other manufacturers up to speed the happier they will be.

  3. squilookle

    On the one hand, the fact that they can be in court and working together at the same time can be explained by the fact that large corporations are not single, consistent entities with personalities, but complex messes of different departments who only have the company logo over the door and the crappy emails from the executives in common.

    But a small part of me, (the part with a fondness for tin foil head wear) wonders if they don't have an agreement to keep engaging in these patent disputes just to get headlines and publicity...

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    So Samsung is the only one capable of making the screens? Now that sounds like a serious bargaining chip in the patent spat. No court injunction required to stop sales of the iPad 3 now.

    1. Stuart Castle

      Re: Optional


      If Samsung are willing lose sales worth potentially hundreds of millions of dollars. Most companies would not want to lose a customer the size of Apple even if they are involved in legal action.

  5. g e

    Sniggers in the Samsung boardroom

    Surprised Sharp can't do it, though, they're a very cunning company usually, even though Samsung are the leading display tech guys (so I believe) these days.

    You can bet someone somewhere in Samsung is busily working out how much cost can be borne now they know they're the only go-to guys for these units.

    'Sorry, guys, shipments delayed slightly, got to get a massive order for, errr, GalaxyS3 and Tab2 displays out on time, let Foxconn know, wouldya?'

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sniggers in the Samsung boardroom

      Have you heard of penalties for breach of contract?

      Oh.. it's you. Of course you haven't, Google doesn't have those.

      1. hj
        Thumb Down

        Re: Sniggers in the Samsung boardroom

        Could you please fill us in some more about the contract(s), seems like you know what is in them.....

      2. g e

        Re: Sniggers in the Samsung boardroom

        Grow a sense of humour fanboi

        Nerdatron perchance?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Sniggers in the Samsung boardroom

          Not me me this time

          and it's Nerg ;)

        2. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sniggers in the Samsung boardroom

      These quotes are from an analyst. So I'd call BS, particularly as a source at Reuters was saying yesterday that LG were making the displays as well.

      So your glee may be a little misplaced

    3. Manu T

      Re: Sniggers in the Samsung boardroom

      Very stupid of Apple to go for tech that can't really be build properly. It's the wost case of differentiation you can do. But I guess that they have to, since they're slowly loosing the performance battle amongst the myriad of tegra's and scorpions out there.

      1. g e


        Yeah you'd think they'd have had samples sent to Cupertino from different batches so they could check display quality, consistency, etc.

        Perhaps Sharp/LG fudged samples to gain the work and only Samsung had the consistency in the real volume output in the end? Mind you the number of different manufacturers there's been in the last 72 hours I'd not be surprised to see Amstrad's, Panasonic's and SONY's names turn up next, it's like technology company bingo!

        When someone gets a tablet to pull apart we'll see then.

      2. hazydave

        Re: Sniggers in the Samsung boardroom

        This is what Apple does -- they design things, but they don't actually make ANYTHING. They have grown used to other companies bending over backwards to deliver what they specify. But in this case, it sure sounds like Apple's paying Samsung to learn how to better best Apple in the tablet market. Again... Samsung has for some time made all of the most expensive ICs in all iOS devices: SOC, flash, RAM, etc.

        This is why all the "Apple owns the supply chain" stories are bogus.

        1. Morg

          Re: Sniggers in the Samsung boardroom

          This is what Apple does -- they sell things, but they don't actually design ANYTHING.

          They take anything that exists, put it in an iPod like case, call it iWhatever, make the GUI all ghey, slap the apple sticker and sell it.

          And indeed, Apple pays a premium for what they ask, and Apple users are happy to bend over and pay for it in the end.

  6. jai

    yesterday's news

    This report from Bloomberg is old news.

    TODAY's news has Reuters refuting the claim that Samsung is the sole supplier:

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The technology of the displays may well be covered by a different set of patents than the set of patents which covers the manufacturing technology.

    Samsung (or another manufacturer) could develop patent-able techniques related to building the devices that would prevent others from building the devices. It would be a funny result to see Samsung stop building devices for Apple and start suing other manufacturers to prevent them from building the devices.

  8. TeeCee Gold badge

    "super high aperture"

    So that's like a regular high aperture with its underpants on the outside then, yes?

    1. g e

      Re: "super high aperture"

      f400 !

      1. Ted Treen

        Re: "super high aperture"

        f400 or, more properly, f/400 would in fact be an extremely small aperture.

        The largest commercially-made lens aperture was, I believe, f/0.95 - from Canon, Voigtländer and also Leica.

        f/400 is venturing into pinhole territory...

  9. dssf

    What was that TV commercial/advert slogan of Sharp, years ago?

    "From SHARP minds come SHARP products..."

    I thought that that was pretty kewl play on words. It still makes me feel giddy and laugh for/with Sharp. But, it has to be humbling for Sharp to see Samsung obtain a lot of the continued screen-make work.

    It probably is humbling for those in both Apple and Samsung who just want to SELL shit and see the mutual neutralization of the court battle. Rationally, it is obvious that LCD, data port, touch screen, near and distant communications, and productivity MUST evolve and WILL evolve and WILL extend well to portable devices, and that was clear since the first PDAs of the 90s became very useful in business and personal life. I remember when Palm Pilots were all the rage. Multiple devices came and went, then finally Palm Pilot took a dive.

    Apple's popularization of tablets is not in and of itself a RIGHT to dominate the market. Merits -- price, functionality, fit-for-purpose, utility, and sensibility are just a mere handful of merits -- should determine how a product fares in its life, and no one, solitary, megalomaniacal or even a humble company should dare/deign to be such an A$$HOLE as to try to claim it all. It is the height of perfidy and odiousness. Fortunately, as this contracting of Samsung to continue making critical Apple parts shows, business will continue -- and it will do so because there are divisions and teams who can see past the smokescreen/red herring BS of patents. After all, tablets are just comminglings of ever-improving bits of tech. The software on them should be driven by a fundamental need to fit usefulness by humans. That drive alone means ultimately any determined company will arrive at similar destinies in design.

    Combs, tires, shoes, tooth brushes, staplers, pencils, pens, desk organizers, paper clips, power strips, surge protectors, folders, filing cabinets, hammers, desk lights.. you name it, almost anything that has more than one manufacturer trying to serve tens of millions if not hundreds of millions of people will eventually converge on what the consumer expects. No one company can provide it all, nor should one sole company be allowed to do so nor allowed to TRY to do so when such a scale is considered. Any one company that plays dirty in trying to do so simply needs to have a few pounds of flesh stripped off its A$$ to make it limp and be unable to sit for a while. Wound-healing and reflectance can do wonders for people AND companies when hubris and greed are allowed to eclipse humility and decency.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fairly normal business practice

    It's not unusual to be working with a company whilst being sued (and counter-suing) in the modern world. Legal action is how contractual obligations sometimes get worked out, doesn't affect the day-to-day co-operation.

  11. Shane Kent

    This just in...

    Apple gets favourable cross license agreements with Samsung and all they had to do was belittle Sharp and LG.

    You know, when our suppliers cannot supply we don't let world + dog know they f-d up. Shame on Apple, this is the sort of stuff they should be safe guarding and not what new devices and features they have coming. If I were Sharp or LG I would strongly consider screwing Apple down the road.

    1. N13L5

      Re: This just in...

      Since the 80's, Apple has always been an unreliable and mostly downright nasty business partner to work with...

      Just ask American retailers, distributors and licensees.

      So no surprise they'd make their suppliers look bad for strategic intrigue or kicks.

      What else would you expect from a company owned by a total crook and conniver, who ripped off his best friend and business partner for 90% of his share on their first deal, refused to acknowledge or support his own daughter, never gave anything to charity in his whole life, was a an unstable liar according to CIA records...

      What can you really expect?

      Of course, some will say: He's rich, while you're still pumping gas at the corner. I guess that's all we look up to now, money is the big golden calf to dance around. Having a spine or maybe honesty or kindness, who cares about that...? He made shiny baubles all his life - woopdidoo

  12. Julian 3

    Know your enemies ... but do business with them always

    Ferengi Rules of Acquisition

    Rule 177

    Know your enemies ... but do business with them always.

  13. Michael 43

    Sharp unbale to supply wat they invented ?

    I think the troubles in japan last year contributes to the supply problem, i think it is more a supply problem in volumes that Apple wanted rather than technological issue....

    And as one poster mentioned Apple does have some dodgy business practices..

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