AU Optronics, LG Display to supply panels for Apple's smaller iPad

Taiwan-based flat panel maker AU Optronics Corp and South Korea's LG Display Co Ltd will supply liquid crystal display (LCD) panels for Apple Inc's yet-to-be-announced small-sized iPad, technology website reported.

Apple is expected to take the wraps off a new version of its iPhone later on Wednesday.

Some analysts also think Apple plans to announce a smaller iPad to safeguard its market share as rivals including Samsung Electronics and Inc begin selling cheaper, seven-inch tablets.

AU Optronics, the world's No.4 LCD maker, will ship about 400,000 to 500,000 panels in September for Apple's reported small-sized iPad, Taiwan's DigiTimes said, citing industry supply chain sources.

LG Display will supply as many as 600,000 panels to Apple, the website reported.

DigiTimes, quoting sources, said supplies for a 7.85-inch iPad began in June, with a monthly volume of several hundred thousand.

The latest generation iPad has a 9.7 inch screen.

AU Optronics and LG Display could not be immediately reached for comment.

The report comes on the day that the U.S. government asked a federal court to impose a $1 billion fine on AU Optronics over its role in a cartel that fixed the prices of LCD panels over a number of years.

AU Optronics shares were up 3 percent at $3.74 on the New York Stock Exchange. LG Display shares closed up 1.5 percent in trading in Seoul.

Copyright Thomson Reuters 2012

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