If Apple wants to make monitors people will buy, it needs to embrace OLED

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Apple is planning to transition its external monitor lineup from LCD and mini-LED displays to OLED ones very soon, according to numerous reports and rumours. 

While a lot has been whispered around the topic, a report from analysts at Omdia gives a hint at the company’s long-term plan. According to the report, Apple is developing 32-inch and 42-inch monitors, both with OLED screens.

If the road map provided by the analysts at Omedia are correct, we will see an update for the external displays, but not for a while. Currently, Apple sells the 27-inch Studio Display and the 32-inch Pro Display XDR, neither of which feature mini-LED or OLED technology. Omedia analysts point out that Apple’s long-term game plan includes two 32-inch and 42-inch external displays to be released in 2027.

The company will almost completely phase out LCDs and mini LEDs at its mobile devices by 2026

Omedia Report

If the report is true and we could see OLED displays relatively soon, this would definitely be a step in the right direction for the company’s display line. This and a post from MacRumors seems to make the prospect of updated displays more realistic, though this contradicts a prediction from prominent display analyst Ross Young, who said we could see multiple versions of the MacBook Air with an OLED display, as well as a few variations of the iPad Pro. But, the Omedia report doesn’t show any plans for that happening in the timeframe given by Ross.

Omedia analysts believe that Apple won’t release an OLED MacBook until at least 2026, and maintains the same belief as Young in terms of the iPad display, expecting to see the first OLED iPad Pro in 2024. The report states “The company will almost completely phase out LCDs and mini LEDs [on] its mobile devices by 2026”.

 Why is this awesome? 

Apple’s expected shift towards OLED displays will finally pull the company into the modern screen game and we’re excited to see it. The monstrous 42-inch screen size definitely positions the display to be a pro product, and the upgrade in size and display type will most likely come with a very steep price tag.

As it stands, the 32-inch Pro Display XDR starts at $4,999 (£4,599 / AU$7,000) not including the ridiculously priced stand, and with an asking price like that, I shiver to think about how ludicrously expensive the OLED 42-inch display might be. 

To be honest, at that size Apple might think that it can pretty much charge whatever it wants for it, as it won’t be a monitor for the general public or everyday hybrid worker. The fact it’ll be so gigantic makes it niche.

Hopefully, it will propel Apple forward in the world of displays, and if done well could be easily implemented into MacBooks and iPads. If Apple avoids pricing these potential OLED monitors too high, they could very easily slip into our list of the best monitors for video editing with super crisp colors and contrast, or best monitors for digital design with more than adequate screen real estate and clarity.