For the iPhone 14 series, Apple is said to ditch a Chinese company and use LG Innotek as a supplier for its front-facing camera. This is the first time Apple will have a South Korean company supplying this component.
According to Korean IT News, Apple has notified its major partners about this change for the iPhone 14. Previously, the company was planning to install LG Innotek’s products on the front camera of the iPhone 15 but decided to move the schedule forward due to quality problems from Chinese camera manufacturers.
Originally, Chinese manufacturers and Japan’s Sharp were the main suppliers for the iPhone’s front camera. The front camera is one-third of the unit price of the rear-facing camera. It had been regarded a low-cost part. The South Korean parts industry have mainly tried to enter the supply chain for iPhone’s rear-facing camera.
IT News report that the unit cost of iPhone 14 front-facing cameras has risen nearly three times compared to previous models due to “the advancement in functions” with features such as autofocus.
LG Innotek already supplies high-end rear-facing cameras for Apple and will split the front-cameras market with Japanese company Sharp.
The publication explains why Apple will now use LG Innotek for the iPhone 14 series:
LG Innotek is slated to benefit greatly. Following the rear-facing camera, they have now emerged as a key supplier for front cameras. They are expected to make trillions in sales just from iPhone 14 front camera orders alone.
In addition to modules, LG Innotek has internalized some key optical parts such as Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) parts, camera PCBs, and actuators. Until now, LG Innotek’s partners have supplied the optical parts, which were then assembled into modules by LG, before being supplied to Apple.
For this year, the iPhone 14 is rumored to feature even better cameras, with a main sensor of 48MP.
You can find here what we expect from this year’s iPhone 14.
Author: José Adorno