Samsung is quite the multi-talented manufacturer. From fridges and phones to laptops and even boats, Samsung has a hand in almost every tech sector out there. For most of the ones that use small to medium sized screens, Samsung has been slowly moving from LCD panels to OLED. The move has mostly paid off in the mobile space, but OLED has taken off quite nicely in luxury TVs as well. Samsung has not only manufactured their own screens, but made panels for other manufacturers as well. In the LCD sector, however, competition has been getting stiff and cheap, especially in China. This is likely part of the reason that Samsung has decided to sell off one of its LCD manufacturing plants to a Chinese business, with the most likely buyer right now looking to be a smaller venture called Trulywill.
The big news item here, though, is the secondary reason that Samsung is said to be pulling out of the LCD biz. Word on the street is that Samsung is inking a deal with Apple to supply OLED panels for the iPhone. With Samsung already manufacturing processors for the fruity and iconic handsets despite some recent scuffles in court, this new deal is bringing the two companies into an even closer partnership. Competing with Japan Display and LG, Samsung would have to open up assembly lines exclusively for Apple's purposes in order to meet demand. This would likely be done using an upfront investment from Apple, making the deal all the more convoluted. Even so, it looks like if this goes through as planned, Samsung stands to become one of Apple's top LCD suppliers. As part of this venture, there are even talks of Samsung opening a new OLED plant exclusively for supplying Apple products.
Samsung Display has been busy with a large number of Chinese manufacturers and is already in bed with Apple on a smaller scale, supplying displays for the Apple Watch. Samsung is still on the fence about a buyer for its LCD facilities, meaning this deal could take a while to materialize. It's not a stretch to surmise that Samsung may be the primary display manufacturer for the iPhone 7. It just goes to show that even corporations that have been at each other's throats will play nice when there's mutual profit involved.