According to iSuppli, Active Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diodes (AMOLED). Samsung Mobile Displays and LG Displays are the only manufacturers of AMOLED panels, and shortages of the displays have been affecting sales of some companies' handsets, such as the HTC Droid Incredible.
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AndroidandMe reports that, in an effort to meet the increased demand for the display technology, "Samsung is already working on a new $2.2 billion production facility" scheduled to start production in late 2011. Unfortunately, LG has made no public announcements that it intends to expand their manufacturing capability for the AMOLED displays.
ISuppli predicts shipments of the small AMOLED displays used in mobile phones "to reach 184.5 million units by 2014, up from 20.4 million units in 2009, for a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 55.1 percent during the period."
iSuppli also mentions how LG and Samsung will determine the future of AMOLED technology:
With Samsung and LG spearheading the development of AMOLED, what the two companies do will determine whether the technology moves beyond its current niche status into a position in which the technology becomes a viable competitor for mobile handset displays.
Samsung's Galaxy S smartphone line uses the same displays, and I believe that Samsung's need of the displays are taking priority over any shipments to out-of-house manufacturers like HTC. Honestly thought, I find it hard to blame them, and it may be the push they need to get a leg up on their competitors.
That poses problems to both carriers and other handset manufacturers. As AndroidandMe points out, "Verizon burned through their initial shipment of the DROID Incredible within a few days and has struggled to get more in stock.". The shortage of displays has already caused HTC to stop wasting time waiting, and switch technology back to LCD.
Phandroid takes note on iSuppli's thoughts:
These are just predictions from one research firm, so we can’t take all of this word for word and number for number, but – as has been echoed for quite too long now – there clearly is a problem that doesn’t seem to be going away as fast as we’d like.
Image from AndroidandMe