Fear of flexible “OLED panel warping” is one reason why Apple would likely use hybrid OLED for the iPad
What is a hybrid OLED panel? It is a panel that uses a combination of rigid and flexible OLED technologies. For example, a hybrid OLED panel would use rigid glass as the base with a plastic layer of flexible thin-film OLED on top. Apple does not want to use only flexible OLED panels because they tend to wrinkle. This happens because of the heat used by lasers to remove a glass substrate that starts as part of a flexible OLED panel during its production.
Apple promotes mini-LED backlit display on 12.9-inch iPad Pro
As well as being less likely to wrinkle, Apple might also like hybrid OLED panels to be thinner than rigid panels and should also be cheaper to produce than flexible panels. Apple currently uses flexible OLED panels for the iPhone. The report notes that if the issues (including the propensity of these panels to wrinkle) can be resolved, Apple may choose to use flexible OLED panels for the iPad instead of hybrid panels.
Mini-LED displays offer users some of the same functionality as OLED panels
Mini-LED backlit displays offer some of the same features that users receive from OLED displays. Mini-LED displays use smaller LEDs as backlights. Due to their smaller size, up to 120 times smaller than those used in traditional LCDs, these panels have a greater number of LEDs behind the scenes. As a result, instead of the 72 LEDs used on the previous 12.9-inch iPad Pro model, 10,000 mini LEDs are used on the current model. They are arranged in four “dimming zones”, each with 2,500 mini-LEDs, to provide the super 1,000,000:1 contrast these displays can deliver.
Keep in mind that mini-LED panels are considered the next step in LCD display technology. So even if Apple were to use it for all of its iPad models, the company would likely continue to work towards the ultimate goal of offering OLED display iPad models. However, due to the cost, we expect Apple to offer such a feature on the more expensive 12.9-inch iPad Pro first, just like it does with the mini-LED.