Last updated: November 25, 2021 at 17:45 UTC + 00:00
Most OEMs have weathered the current global semiconductor shortage with relative success, but the mobile phone market could face another supply problem next year. An insufficient supply of power management ICs was the root of the problem this year. The issue has been addressed, for the most part. However, the market watchers cited by DigiTimes Now estimate that OLED smartphone makers may face further production issues in 2022 due to a low supply of OLED display driver integrated circuits (DDIs).
Samsung is by far the world’s largest manufacturer of OLED panels for mobile devices. It widely uses AMOLED technology for its own smartphones and tablets, and supplies the technology to other OEMs, including Apple. With that in mind, a DDI supply shortage could hurt Samsung the most.
It all depends on the high demand next year
Market watchers estimate that the supply chain will have enough resources to manufacture around 650 million DDI units next year. At the same time, they expect OEMs to manufacture a total of 710 million OLED smartphones combined, which means the DDI offering could run out of around 60 million units.
OLED manufacturers are now trying to increase their DDI production capacity upstream (via WinFuture), although everything will depend on high demand. This is difficult to predict given the current market climate. If demand increases, manufacturers of OLED displays like Samsung could be in trouble. If demand declines, there could be enough DDI for everyone, although, in turn, that would mean an overall drop in smartphone shipments around the world. All things considered, it could be very difficult for the global smartphone market to show growth in 2022.
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