4-1: Hon Hai owns 66% share of Sharp; Hon Hai increases investment in Mainland China; Apple hopes to ship 4-5 million in 2Q16; etc.

Hon Hai owns 66% share of Sharp with JPY288.811 billion; Hon Hai increases investment in Mainland China with USD1.5 billion; MediaTek shipment is still influenced by earthquake that causes delay of TSMC wafer, and expects to recover in May, June 2016; Apple hopes to ship 4-5 million iPhone SE in 2Q16; It seems China and India have more interest in Apple iPhone SE than other regions; etc.

Chipset

Apple is applying Fan Out Packaging technology for the first time out of all Smartphone manufacturers to ASM (Antenna Switching Module) Chip that will be loaded into iPhone 7. Apple has ordered parts from Japanese ASM Chip supplier and foreign semiconductor package test (OSAT: Outsourced Semiconductor Assembly and Test) businesses. (TechNews, ET News)
Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) presented a breakdown of 2015 semiconductor sales showing the significance of different categories of chips including DRAMs, Flash, MPUs, MCUs, analog ICs, discretes, optoelectronics and sensors. (EE Times, OfWeek)

sia-2015-semiconductor-charts

MediaTek’s shipments are still affected partially by TSMC wafer delivery delays caused by an earthquake that hit southern Taiwan in early February, and are unlikely to return to normal until May or June 2016. (Digitimes, 52RD)

Display

Hon Hai / Foxconn has entered into a deal to purchase display maker Sharp for USD3.5 billion, bringing to an end months of speculation and negotiations. (The Verge, Android Headlines, Apple Insider, Sina)

foxconn-sharp-deal-done

According to IHS, the South Korean players’ share in the global LCD panel market is expected to fall from 41% to 38% between 1Q16 and 3Q18 and be at around 35% in 2021 whereas Chinese manufacturers’ share is estimated to rise from 20% to 28% between 1Q16 and 3Q18. The market research firm mentioned that this narrowing of the gap between the two groups is something slower than previously expected. (TechNews, Business Korea)

Memory

JEDEC Solid State Technology Association, the global leader in the development of standards for the microelectronics industry, today announced the publication of JESD220-2 Universal Flash Storage (UFS) Card Extension Standard. (CN Beta, Business Wire)

jedec-ufs-standard

National Memory Base (国家存储器基地) on 28 March will begin construction of new factory in China Wuhan. The construction includes chipset factory, supply chain, etc., and will invest USD24 billion (about CNY160 billion) in next 5 years, and expect to produce 300,000 units per month in 2020. (Xinhuanet, 163, CN Beta)

Battery

LG Innotek unveils a 15-watt wireless charging transmitter for smartphones following World Wireless Power Consortium (WPC) and AirFuel Alliance standards, able to charge a completely discharged battery to 50% in just 30 minutes. (Android Authority, Android Central, Korea Herald)

lg-wireless-charger

According to IHS, the wireless charging receiver market grew more than 160% in 2015 over the previous year, as annual global shipments reached 144 million units. Annual shipment volume is expected to top 1 billion units by 2020 and 2 billion by 2025. (IHS, press, EE Times, HC360)

ihs-wireless-charging-receivers-2014-2025

Smartphones

Chip orders from Apple are relatively slow in 2Q16 compared to those in the same quarter in previous years, according to industry sources. (Digitimes, press, CN Beta)
Apple is hoping to ship 4-5 million iPhone SE units during 2Q16, which won’t be enough to compensate for a decline in iPhone 6s and 6s Plus sales, supply chain sources indicated. (Apple Insider, Phone Arena, MacRumors, IT Home)
Apple iPhone SE teardown shows hardware ranging from iPhone 5 to 6s – Apple A9 chipset with SK Hynix-made LPDDR4 2GB, NFC, audio chips and motion sensor from 6s; Qualcomm modem from 6; and touchscreen controller from 5s. (Chipworks, article, eTrade Supply, article, My Drivers)

apple-iphone-se-teardown

LG G5 senior designer Lee Jung-hoon indicates that there will be more modular phones like the LG G5 coming up. (The Droid Guy, The Verge, Tuicool)
Hon Hai declared additional investment plans to Mainland China, saying that additional investment will be put into Foxconn (Far East) Limited, transferred to Best Behavior Holdings Limited, again transferred to China Galaxy Enterprises Limited to put USD 1.5 billion in Hongfujin Precision Electronics (Zhengzhou) Co., Ltd., a local subsidiary under Foxconn and a production base for assembling iPhone. (CN Beta, 4-Traders, Investegate)
AT&T is reportedly looking to make an Android device in partnership with Cyanogen to weaken Google’s control over the market. (Android Authority, The Information, 163)
According to SimilarWeb, the March 21 2016 launch gave Apple above average traffic in two key target markets key to its cheaper smartphone strategy: India and China. In contrast to the average worldwide traffic rise of 83%, Apple saw a one-day traffic increase of 160% from India and 150% in China. (CN Beta, Quartz, 9to5Mac)

similarweb-iphone-opening-weekend-sales similarweb-iphone-se-sales

vivo X6S / X6S Plus are officially launched – 5.2” / 5.7” FHD Super AMOLED display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 652 processor, 13MP / 16MP PDAF + 8MP cameras, 4GB RAM, 32GB / 64GB storage, Android 5.1, LTE, fingerprint sensor, AKM4375 32-bit DAC / ES9028 DAC within a YAMAHA YSS-205X audio processor, 2400mAh battery, CNY2598 / CNY2998. (GSM Arena, vivo, vivo, Helpix)
vivo-x6s-x6s-plus

Tablets

China and other Asian markets are also seeing decreased demand for white box tablets due to shifts to branded tablets, as well as reliance on smartphones and phablets. While the total tablet volume in 2015 was more than 207 million, ABI Research expects this to sink below 140 million global shipments in 2021. (Digitimes, ABI Research, press)

abi-global-weighting-total-tablet-shipments-2015-2021

Microsoft announces that Windows 10 now has over 270 million users eight months since its launch in late July 2015. (Windows Central, 163, DoNews)
Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux distribution and Microsoft have partnered up to integrate Ubuntu into Windows 10. (GSM Arena, ZDNet, Sina, 163)

Wearables

According to CB Insights, 2015 represented a 63% decline from 2014 results in terms of dollars invested. (199IT, CB Insights, press)

cbinsights-2011-2015-robotics-yearly-financing

In 2015, over 200 start-ups invested a total of USD3.5 billion in the VR business in China and these companies expect the VR market to take off in 2016 and have been releasing products for the market. (Digitimes, press, 21JINGJI)
Google announces the launch of a Cardboard SDK for iOS developers, allowing them to more easily create native iPhone apps and experiences that will work with the Google Cardboard. Google is also debuting VR View, a feature that allows immersive content to be embedded into apps and websites. (TechNews, Mac Rumors, Digital Trends, TechCrunch)
Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE) executive vice president Masayasu Ito indicates that the company is considering making PS VR compatible with PC. (Nikkei, TechNews, Polygon)
Fitbit announces that it shipped 1 million of Blaze fitness-focused smartwatches in its first month of availability, and shipped 1 million of its Alta fitness trackers since its debut on March 9. (Windows Central, Fortune)

Internet of Things

Scientists from the China Computer Go team will issue a challenge to AlphaGo by the end of 2016, said attendees at an event in Beijing organized by the Chinese Go Association and the Chinese Association for Artificial Intelligence. (CN Beta, Reuters, Gizmodo)
Amazon expands Dash buttons to 100 more brands, including Charmin, Doritos, Energizer, Red Bull, Starbucks, Trojan, and Vitamin Water. (Android Headlines, The Verge)

amazon-dash

A Boston startup has now redesigned the wine bottle to make it smarter and keep wine fresh for up to 30 days. Kuvée is a wine dispenser that prevents oxygen from seeping inside and users just insert one of the wines into the Kuvée Bottle and pour. (EE Trend, CNBC, Digital Trends, Daily Mail)

kuvee-smart-bottle

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