LONDON – As a result of factors such as stock clean-up, inflation and geopolitical issues influencing consumer device markets, Omdia estimates the cover lens module shipments will inevitably decrease from 6.36 billion units in 2021 to 6.01 billion units in 2022, down 4.5% year on year (YoY).
Mobile phone applications account for the largest shipment share (48.7% in 2021). Alkali-based glass materials including soda lime, aluminosilicate, and lithium aluminosilicate are dominant in mobile phone application. Lithium aluminosilicate (37.7%) surpassed aluminosilicate (33.6%) and grabbed the biggest shipment share in 2021. Glass ceramic material accounted for 3.1% share in 2021 due to Apple's adoption in the iPhone. In contrast, the Android brands adoption rate of ceramic glass was low because of limited capacity. Use of compound materials is rising because it is a more cost-effective option for rear-side cover lens use than alkali-based glass materials in the 3D form factor. Ceramic shipments for rear-side cover lens use reached peak levels in 2020 but were expected to eventually decline due to higher cost and fewer supplier sources.
On the other hand, CPI (colorless polyimide) and UTG (ultra-thin glass) are widely applied on foldable AMOLED display devices (active-matrix organic light-emitting diode) such as Samsung Galaxy Z Fold series, Samsung Galaxy Z Flip series, Huawei Mate X series, Xiaomi Fold series, OPPO Find N series, Moto Razr series, Honor Magic V series, and Vivo X-Fold series. Shipments of the foldable cover lenses applied in smartphones are still limited. Omdia estimates shipments will gradually increase while the cost and performance are further improved in areas such as resistance and crease in foldable phones.
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