Apple implementations of mini-LED panels in its upcoming MacBook lineups will energize supplier investment, pushing the entire industry to greater adoption of the display technology, says well-respected industry analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.
Along with its 12.9-inch iPad Pro, Apple’s upcoming redesigned 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros are expected to feature mini-LED displays. In his latest investors note, shared by MacRumors, Kuo says this will energize strategic supplier investments in the technology, which will allow Apple to bring down production costs and diversify supply risk.
We believe that MacBooks, not iPads, mainly drive Mini LED panel shipments. MacBook shipments have not grown much in the past few years. However, we expect MacBook shipments to grow significantly by 20% YoY, or more in 2021 and 2022, due to the adoption of Mini LED panels, Apple Silicon, and all-new designs.
The redesigned 14 and 16-inch MacBook Pro models due this year are expected to feature an overall new design that will boast an overall new design boasting an HDMI port and SD card slow, be powered by next-generation Apple silicon chips, will see the removal of the Touch Bar, and the return of the MagSafe magnetic power cable.
Kuo believes that Apple is already “actively looking for second suppliers of key Mini LED components.” Kuo says if Apple’s mini-LED notebooks are a win, other notebook makers and their suppliers will be pushed towards the adoption of the technology.
Looking ahead to 2023, Kuo singles out Apple’s work on micro-LED technology as the next major display market disruptor.
Mini-LED is the same as LED backlighting that’s used today but with many more LEDs for more dimming zones, while micro-LED is similar to OLED with self-emissive pixels that can each be independently lit.