Foxconn announces $10 billion LCD factory in Wisconsin

Foxconn Technology Group, the world's top contract manufacturer that counts Apple and other major Silicon Valley giants as its clients, has officially confirmed it would invest $10 billion into a new 20-million-square-foot manufacturing facility in Wisconsin to churn out high-resolution 8K LCD display panels used in smartphones, car dashboards and TVs.

3D Touch component costs for iPhone 8 to double vs iPhone 7

Apple is paying between $7 and $9 per unit for iPhone 7's 3D Touch components, but that price is expected to triple for the firm's rumored OLED-based iPhone 8 model to between $18 and $22.

The 150 percent price increase, according to a report in the Chinese-language Economic Daily News cited by DigiTimes, stems from the fact that pressure sensors for OLED displays require a separate protective glass bonding on both the front and rear of the display panel.

“Due to the additional bonding of glass covers, overall processing cost for OLED-based 3D Touch solution is about 50 percent higher than that for the LCD-based one but the quotes for the client is about 150 percent higher,” reads the report.

Taiwanese touch panel makers TPK Holdings and General Interface Solution act as suppliers of 3D Touch parts for existing LCD-based iPhones. Both TPK and General Interface Solution should be the sole suppliers of iPhone 8's enhanced 3D Touch components as well.

Apple has accepted the price increase, according to Economic Daily News.

iPhone 7's 3D Touch module, as mentioned before, directly bonds pressure sensors on the LCD display panel. For OLED display technology, TPK's 3D Touch solution entails bonding of a glass cover on the front and back side of an OLED panel each “to reinforce the fragile panel.”

TPK has reportedly passed certification for its OLED-based 3D Touch solution for iPhone 8. The company now expects to obtain significant orders from Apple.

WSJ: Japan Display creating flexible LCD panels for 2018 iPhones

iPhone display supplier Japan Display has devised new manufacturing processes for mass production of flexible liquid crystal display (LCD) panels. According to a report Wednesday in The Wall Street Journal, Apple is considering using flexible LCD panels in iPhones launching in 2018 and beyond.

This is an interesting development in light of rumors that iPhone 8 will be equipped with a flexible organic light-emitting diode (OLED) screen. While not as flexible as curved OLED panels, Japan Display's new processes do allow for the creation of bendable LCDs that support designs like Samsung's curved-screen Galaxy Edge series.