According to reports from Japan, Taiwan's Hon Hai (Foxconn) is establishing an OLED R&D center in Japan with an aim to start AMOLED panel production in 2015. Hon Hai is in talks with Sharp's Sakai Display Product (SDP) large-size LCD production base. SDP is jointly operated by Hon Hai and Sharp.

Foxconn production line photo

According to the report, Hon Hai understand it needs to catch up with the leading Korean OLED makers and is so looking to tap into Japan's technical experienced personnel. Hon Hai expects to recruit around 20 OLED related employees during 2013, and this will grow to around 40 employees during the next three years.

Historically Hon Hai and Sharp were against OLED technologies, but this is now changing as the companies understand OLED is the future of displays. Sharp showed two oxide-TFT (IGZO) based OLED panel prototypes at SID 2012 (a WRGB 13.5" QFHD 326 ppi panel and a 3.4" 540x960 flexible panel), and in April 2013 they reportedly decided to launch a three-year project to develop OLED mass production technologies - which will be ready by 2016. Perhaps this new collaboration with Hon Hai will help Sharp accelerate those OLED plans.

Hon Hai is also the parent company of Chimei Innolux, so they already have access to OLED technology, but they still need technical help from Japan. Hon Hai is a major Apple supplier, and perhaps this will enable Apple's first OLED device in the future...

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