Apple’s first product, which integrates Mini LED display technology, is likely to be launched later than expected due to the coronavirus outbreak, and Apple’s next-generation iMac Pro is expected to feature a Mini LED display, according to a new study by Guo, an analyst at Tianfeng Securities.
In a note to investors on Thursday, Guo said recent supply chain data showed that Apple’s manufacturing partners were preparing for mass production of LED chips in the third quarter of 2020, followed by panel and terminal assembly in the fourth quarter, with the latter manufacturing phase likely to move forward in the first quarter of 2021.
Apple has been expected to launch six new devices with Mini LED display technology by the end of 2020. It is also predicted that Apple will launch the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, 10.2-inch iPad, 7.9-inch iPad mini, 27-inch iMac Pro, 16-inch MacBook Pro and 14.1-inch MacBook Pro this year, each with a Mini LED screen. At the time, analysts said the mini LED would be “unaffected by COVID-19”, but the forecast now appears to be overly optimistic.
The revised Mini LED manufacturing estimate makes it unlikely that the six rumored devices will be on the shelves in 2020. Despite a slight shift in Apple’s Mini LED program, the COVID-19 outbreak is not expected to have a significant impact on the company’s overall strategy.
“We don’t think investors need to worry too much about the extension of the Mini LED schedule, which is a key technology that Apple will promote over the next five years,” Guo’s note reads. “Even if the short-term schedule is affected by coronaviruses, it will not undermine the long-term positive trend. “
The analyst expects Apple’s Mini LED shipments to grow at a rapid 300 percent in 2021 and 225 percent in 2022, respectively, suggesting more product designs are in the pipeline.