Apple Pulling Plug On MicroLED Smartwatch R&D Work Has Larger Display Implications: YOLE Analysis

March 1, 2024 by Dave Haynes

The research and analysis firm Yole Group has posted an interesting and deep insights about the overall prospects for the microLED display industry in the wake of news that Apple has abandoned plans for microLED-based smartwatches, and laid off most of the team that had been working on the project.

While it is/was one product for one company, Yole has suggested in analyses about microLED’s prospects that “Apple’s smartwatch project was the incubator, not only for the company but for the entire industry, and that failure would be a devastating, if not fatal blow to the industry.”

The challenge for microLED has also come from OLED, which has been steadily improved for key performance characteristics like brightness and operating life.

The digital signage and pro AV industries mostly think about microLED in the context of large-format displays and video walls. But Apple and a pile of other companies have been investing billions in patents and R&D work to develop wearables, smartphone displays and things like digital dashboards for automotive.

Yole has a particular expertise in microLED, so if you are interested in what’s going on and what this might mean for the technology (the Apple news is bad, but not a death blow for R&D and investment), this is a worthwhile read.

  1. Guy Tonti says:

    Not sure I read as much into this as anything against microLED, but along with the pulling out from the electric car Apple is transitioning all available resources into AI.

Leave a comment