Chimei Innolux to enter touch panel game

Taiwanese maker of flat panel displays Chimei Innolux is starting to expand its capacities for manufacturing displays in the touch screen space. It has been using a 4.5th generation panel plant based in Chunan – northern Taiwan – to make touch panels and will set up two more in the Southern Taiwan Science Park.

Taiwan Economic News suggests that with the growing sales and upcoming boom of tablet and slate PCs, touch screen displays are going to be big business – with the iPad shipments alone forecast to hit 12.9 million just this year. The biggest supplier for touch panels for Apple at the moment is South Korea’s LG, which has also confirmed that there will be its own Android tablet for Q4 this year.

Earlier this year we reported on Samsung beginning its own shipments for 9.7 inch touch panels that it will flog on to Apple for its iPad, with up to 500,000 shipments planned monthly at time of publishing. As we mentioned in June, angle technology preferences needs to be taken into account too.

Samsung likes using VA wide angle but was willing to switch its operations to the wide angle IPS standard which LG operates with and what Apple wants. We’re not sure which Chimei’s preferred panel angle manufacturing will be just yet. 

Everyone’s getting in on the tablet action, and with manufacturers quick to hop onto the bandwagon while still remaining cautious about the potential of oversupply, it’d be a good time to get involved in case some of the factories get full. Chimei will apparently begin an aggressive strategy in the touch panel market from later on this year, or early next year.