Apple Shifts Touch Sensor Structures Toward In-Cell in Mobile Phones, Film in Tablet PCs, According to NPD DisplaySearch

Shipments of Displays with In-Cell Touch More than Doubling in 2013 Driven by iPhone 5

Sort Date: 07232013

SANTA CLARA, CALIF., July 23, 2013—Apple’s adoption of two new touch sensor structures—in-cell for the iPhone 5 and GF2 (double-sided ITO film) for the iPad—has produced shifts in the touch-panel industry supply chain.

According to the latest Quarterly Touch Panel Market Analysis from NPD DisplaySearch, displays with in-cell touch are expected to rise from 7.3% of mobile phone shipments in 2012 to 13.7% in 2013, while shipments of GG DITO (double-sided ITO glass) structure are expected to decline from 10.3% to 0.6%. For tablet PCs, shipments of GF2 sensor structure are expected to rise from 4.7% in 2012 to 28.4% in 2013, while shipments of GG DITO structure decline from 37.2% to 8.1%.

From 2007 to 2011, Apple used GG touch sensors for its iPhones, and then switched to in-cell technology for the iPhone 5. Apple used GG for its iPads from 2010 to 2012, and then switched to GF2 for the iPad mini in 2012 and for the iPad in 2013.

“Mobile phone and tablet PC touch technologies and sensor structures are evolving quickly, due in large part to Apple’s move away from GG structure to in-cell touch technology and GF2,” said Calvin Hsieh, research director at NPD DisplaySearch. “Apple’s high market share in these categories means that any technological movement is felt throughout the component supply chain.”

Figure 1: Touch Sensor Structures for Mobile Phones and Tablet PCs (Unit Share)

Source: NPD DisplaySearch Q2’13 Quarterly Touch Panel Market Analysis

The Q2’13 Quarterly Touch Panel Market Analysis also finds that Windows 8, which was released in October 2012, has had trouble influencing the notebook PC market. Affordable tablet PCs are cannibalizing sales of devices that are running Microsoft’s new operating system.

Even so, touch panel penetration in notebook PCs is expected to rise to 18%, primarily because of price declines for one glass solution (OGS) touch modules and an increase in the penetration of low-cost strengthened sensor glass (SSG). NPD DisplaySearch forecasts that OGS will account for 83.5% of notebook PC touch sensors in 2013, while SSG will reach 5.6%. “The consumer electronics industry is now waiting to see whether touch technology can help turn the tide in declining notebook PC shipments,” Hsieh said.

To learn more about touch and other emerging display technologies from NPD DisplaySearch and other industry leaders, register for The NPD DisplaySearch Emerging Display Technologies Conference, being held on August 6, 2013 from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm PT at the Hilton San Jose in San Jose, California. NPD DisplaySearch will also hold its Taiwan Touch Conference on August14, 2013 at the Taipei International Convention Center in Taipei, Taiwan. Media interested in attending either conference should contact Sarah Bogaty at 1.516.625.2357 or

For more detailed information on shifts in the touch screen market, contact Charles Camaroto about the Quarterly Touch Panel Market Analysis, or contact your regional DisplaySearch office in China, Japan, Korea, or Taiwan.

About NPD DisplaySearch
NPD DisplaySearch, part of The NPD Group, provides global market research and consulting specializing in the display supply chain, including trend information, forecasts and analyses developed by a global team of experienced analysts with extensive industry knowledge. NPD DisplaySearch supply chain expertise complements sell-through information from The NPD Group, thereby providing a true end-to-end view of the display supply chain from materials and components to shipments of electronic devices with displays to sales of major consumer and commercial channels. For more information, visit us at Read our blog at and follow us on Twitter at @DisplaySearch.

About The NPD Group, Inc.
The NPD Group provides global information and advisory services to drive better business decisions. By combining unique data assets with unmatched industry expertise, we help our clients track their markets, understand consumers, and drive profitable growth. Sectors covered include automotive, beauty, consumer electronics, entertainment, fashion, food/foodservice, home, luxury, mobile, office supplies, sports, technology, toys, and video games. For more information, visit and Follow us on Twitter: @npdtech and @npdgroup.


Client Login

Forgot your password?
Become a Client

Contact a DisplaySearch representative today and learn how our in-depth display-related research can benefit your organization.

Contact us now!