LG Display will spend around $1.7 billion to build a new production line for making flexible OLED smartphone screens. Flexible smartphone screens, which go into phones like the curved Galaxy S7 Edge, are becoming increasingly popular, and they seem likely to become a dominant style in a few years. The investment is meant to let LG become a leader in this display tech — it may have buyers lined up already, or LG could be planning to use the displays itself.
The production line will be installed at the same OLED display factory that LG announced plans to build, for around $8.9 billion, last November. It’s been speculated that the plant will be used to make screens for future iPhones, as Apple is expected to switch from LCD displays to OLED displays starting in 2018. There have been rumors that an iPhone with curved sides could come along as well, so LG may be gearing up for that, too. LG says its flexible OLED line should start production in the second half of 2018, so we may see the first fruits of this investment come then or early the following year.