Huawei won’t be able to use LG or Samsung panels due to US veto. Samsung Electronics and LG Display will stop supplying Huawei with panels for their smartphones. The two companies will suspend their relationship with Huawei to provide supplies after September 15. The new restrictions of the Trump administration will come into effect and prohibit any company that uses US components from selling to Huawei.
LG Display explained that “these US restrictions will have a minimal impact on the company” as it “supplies a limited number of panels to Huawei.” On the other hand, Samsung Display, has decided not to make statements.
After the chip crysis Huawei now loses LG and Huawei panels
Without Samsung or LG Display, Huawei is in the hands of the Chinese manufacturer BOE
In addition to panels, Samsung will stop supplying components to Huawei. Memory manufacturer SK Hynix will also join in on this decision. Also TSMC stopped producing for the Chinese manufacturer.
At the end of July, China was promoting the creation of SMIC (China Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp) for the development of transistors and components.
Samsung is the exclusive provider of OLED panels for the flagship Huawei P40 Pro +. On the other hand, the P40 Pro model uses Samsung panels, BOE and LED Display in a combined way, while the Huawei P40 bets exclusively on BOE panels.
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The Chinese company BOE is one of the largest panel suppliers in the world and Huawei is expected to continue working with its OLED panels for the future Huawei Mate 40. Other Chinese panel suppliers such as CSOT or Visionox have not got enough success so far to be able to compete for a place in the high-end.
Currently, BOE supplies curved OLED panels to manufacturers such as Huawei or Motorola . In 2019, with 413 million panels shipped globally, it surpassed Samsung Display as the world’s largest supplier of panels for smartphones. Other manufacturers like Apple have also opted for BOE panels for devices like the Apple Watch. It was even rumored that Apple would use BOE OLED panels for the future iPhone 12
What options does Huawei have for laptops and televisions
The decision not to send panels to Huawei will not only affect smartphones . Under its 1+8+N strategy, Huawei has been promoting its ecosystem of laptops, tablets and televisions for several years. All of them are devices with large screens, in some cases manufactured by Samsung or LG. Huawei needs Samsung panels or they need to choose a new path.
BOE was positioned in 2019 as the world’s largest supplier of laptop panels with 55.1 million units, far behind Samsung and LG.
In the following positions there are AUO and Innolux. LG Display sent a total of 29 million panels for laptops, a considerably lower number considering they work with international brands such as Apple or Microsoft.
In recent years the growth of BOE has been so enormous that, in other sectors such as monitors and LCD panels for televisions it has surpassed LG Display. We will have to wait what are Huawei’s next moves for products like its Vision X65, its first OLED TV. Without LG panels, Huawei could bet on adopting designs similar to those of TCL, which produces its own panels.