Where tiny thoughts turn into big ideas.

Apple Investing In Toshiba’s New Plant for iPhone Displays

According to a report by Japanese newspaper Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun, Apple is planning to invest in Toshiba’s new LCD plant in the Ishikawa Prefecture, central Japan, for the manufacturing of iPhone displays. The report, relayed by MarketWatch, claims that Apple has picked Toshiba as the sole Japanese supplier for iPhone LCDs, effectively ceasing talks with Sharp over an investment in their facility.

The report said that Sharp was no longer a candidate for Apple’s investment. Sharp said in a statement released Wednesday that the Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun report “contradicts the facts.”

A spokesman for Toshiba’s LCD display unit declined to comment.

After Apple’s Q1 earnings call in January, Apple COO Tim Cook told the press and analysts that the company had entered a $3.9 billion component supply deal in a key area that was “an absolutely fantastic use of Apple’s cash”. Many speculated that, after flash storage supply deals and agreements, Apple identified high-resolution LCD displays as a key factor to iOS’ devices manufacturing process. Back then, speculation and Tim Cook’s own words suggested that Apple had entered a deal with three manufacturers, including Toshiba and Sharp. A month before the the Q1 financial results, Apple was indeed rumored to be discussing with Toshiba an investment in a new $1.19 billion factory – the same that Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun is mentioning today. But at the same time, several reports suggested that Apple was also considering a second investment in a $1.2 billion facility from Sharp – with over $60 billion in cash, a double investment in LCD manufacturing wouldn’t have surprised anyone. But today’s report seems to confirm that the deal with Sharp hasn’t gone through, implying that Toshiba has been chosen as the only Japanese manufacturer of iPhone LCD screens.

Apple’s Q2 earnings call is scheduled later today at 5PM ET.

Unlock More with Club MacStories

Founded in 2015, Club MacStories has delivered exclusive content every week for over six years.

In that time, members have enjoyed nearly 400 weekly and monthly newsletters packed with more of your favorite MacStories writing as well as Club-only podcasts, eBooks, discounts on apps, icons, and services. Join today, and you’ll get everything new that we publish every week, plus access to our entire archive of back issues and downloadable perks.

The Club expanded in 2021 with Club MacStories+ and Club Premier. Club MacStories+ members enjoy even more exclusive stories, a vibrant Discord community, a rotating roster of app discounts, and more. And, with Club Premier, you get everything we offer at every Club level plus an extended, ad-free version of our podcast AppStories that is delivered early each week in high-bitrate audio.

Choose the Club plan that’s right for you:

  • Club MacStories: Weekly and monthly newsletters via email and the web that are brimming with app collections, tips, automation workflows, longform writing, a Club-only podcast, periodic giveaways, and more;
  • Club MacStories+: Everything that Club MacStories offers, plus exclusive content like Federico’s Automation Academy and John’s Macintosh Desktop Experience, a powerful web app for searching and exploring over 6 years of content and creating custom RSS feeds of Club content, an active Discord community, and a rotating collection of discounts, and more;
  • Club Premier: Everything in from our other plans and AppStories+, an extended version of our flagship podcast that’s delivered early, ad-free, and in high-bitrate audio.