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In a new report, DigiTimes reveals the so-called ‘budget iPhone X’ will not have the thick bezels widely expected to be inevitable due to its cost-saving LCD display. Instead, a technological breakthrough means Apple can create the exact same bezel-less design as the more expensive second-generation iPhone X and new iPhone X Plus.
The secret sauce is Apple’s investment in cutting-edge backlight technology from Japanese manufacturer Nichia.
The result is the creation of a ‘0.3t LED chip’ which requires significantly smaller connectors, therefore, cutting the bottom bezel down to as small as 2-2.5mm. By contrast, the 0.4t chips used in other LCD smartphones require 4-4.5mm connectors and result in the larger ‘chin’ seen on almost all iPhone rivals.
DigiTimes says the downside of 0.3t LED chips is decreased “accuracy and stability” and inevitably cost, but Apple is famed for enforcing exacting standards and testing is believed to have started back in early 2018 to mitigate these issues.
Unsurprisingly, Nichia will be the sole supplier of these chips for the budget iPhone X (a model I expect will simply be called ‘iPhone’), but up to five Chinese and Taiwanese companies are claimed to be on the verge of perfecting 0.3t LED chips as well which should a) keep Nichia’s asking price from getting out of control, and b) open up the technology to Android handsets.