According to Reuters , Toshiba’s wholly owned subsidiary, Toshiba Mobile Display Company, is apparently planning to construct a 100 Billion Yen ($1.2 Billion) factory in Japan’s Ishikawa prefecture. The factory will be used to manufacture LCD panels – mainly for Apple’s iPhone. The development was reported in the Nikkei Business Daily, which also said construction was expected to begin early next year, with production expected to begin in the second half of 2011.
Toshiba already make LCD Panels for Apple, of which the most recent one was the Retina Display. These are manufactured at an already existing plant in the same Ishikawa prefecture, which pumps out around 8 and a half million LCD units every month. This is expected to double upon the completion of the new factory.
Apple is known to be fiercely protective of supplies for their products, so reports of their investment in this plant come as no surprise. Aside from powering their devices on a custom A4 processor, Apple’s Retina Display was one of the most important reasons their fourth generation of iPhones and iPod Touchs were lauded. So it’s a smart move by Apple to secure a steady supply of screens for their products.