Samsung wisely got the jump on the rest of the smartphone industry by holding a product launch in San Francisco on February 20th, 5 days ahead of the Mobile World Congress (MWC) show which starts on February 25th in Barcelona. Called Samsung Unpacked, Samsung wanted to make sure it introduced its foldable smartphone before Huawei and others and also got all the media’s attention on its S10 launch.
OLED panel revenues will increase by 8% in 2019 to $28.6 billion, according to the latest update of the DSCC Quarterly OLED Shipment and Fab Utilization Report for Q1 2019, with double-digit growth in area and units, as OLED continues to take a larger share of smartphone and TV shipments.
The Q1 update of this report gives DSCC’s revised forecast for 2019 for eleven different applications for OLED panels, with detailed figures for units, revenue, area, average selling price (ASP), and other parameters with splits by application, panel supplier, substrate (rigid/flexible/foldable), and brand. The report also provides final figures for Q4’18 and for the full year 2018 with the same detail.
We have updated our monthly and quarterly OLED and Mobile LCD fab utilization data through March and distributed pivot tables and Powerpoint slides. This data includes:
The utilization data can be segmented by:
It was a record week after the Chinese Lunar New Year for Chinese display stocks with:
It was an unusual quarter for Samsung Display in that OLEDs suffered their largest Y/Y decline to date, while LCD margins improved significantly.
Samsung Display’s revenues fell 10% Q/Q and 20% Y/Y to $8.13B. The primary cause of the decline was a Q/Q double-digit reduction in rigid OLED smartphone panel shipments. Operating income fell a little faster than revenues, down 12% Q/Q and 33% Y/Y, due to a larger contribution from lower margin LCDs. Overall, operating margins remained flat at 11% due to a smaller contribution from low margin rigid OLEDs.
LG Display is usually the first flat panel maker to release earnings each quarter, and in many ways they have been a bellweather for the industry. They always give guidance on the upcoming quarter, and historically their guidance has not always been accurate. For Q4, though, LGD’s guidance given at the end of October was spot on, and included a phrase that captured the industry dynamic in Q4, and perhaps for some time to come.
In October, LGD said that they expected that panel ASPs will diverge by company, product, and size as company specific pricing and profitability affects the price (emphasis added). As we look at the results of the first three panel makers reporting Q4 results this week, that’s exactly what we’ve seen.
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