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Sharp Rated As Junk As They Struggle To Supply Apple

Sharp Rated As Junk As They Struggle To Supply Apple

The Company who won contracts from Apple earlier this year to manufacture iPhone display screens has admitted they have not started mass producing screens for Apple, despite a scheduled Apple press conference on September 12th when a new iPhone 5 is tipped to be launched. 

Analysts believe that the lack of supply from Sharp could affect Apple’s supply for the upcoming launch of the new iPhone.

Originally Sharp indicated they planned to start shipping iPhone screens by the end of August, now it appears that the Japanese Company is having manufacturing problems with the new in-cell LCD panel which is a new technology that allows manufacturers to deliver a thinner smartphone by integrating touch sensors into the LCD, eliminating the need for a separate touch-screen layer.

The display panels, which are more difficult to mass produce compared with conventional LCD panels, are also being manufactured by Japan Display and LG Display who have already started shipping the screens to Apple.

It’s also tipped that Sharp is working with Apple on a new Apple TV display screen.

The problem for Sharp, who has suffered in the past due to poor marketing, is that they are facing a major cash crunch and looming debt-repayment problems.

Currently the Company has $15 billion in interest-bearing debt. Last month they reported losses of $3.18 billion as its core businesses remain unprofitable due to a slump in TV prices and solar panels.

Another setback for Sharp occurred when Hon Hai, who trade as Foxconn and is a major partner with Apple, agreed in March to take a 9.9% stake in the troubled Japanese company, just before the deal was set to be finalised Sharp’s share value fell steeply resulting in Foxconn moving to renegotiate the terms of the deal.

Hon Hai Chairman Terry Gou was in Japan this week and said the two companies weren’t able to reach an agreement.