6-29: Tsinghua Holdings plans to invest CNY50 billion; Huawei Kirin 960 leaks; Kunshan GVO 2nd phase AMOLED start construction; etc.

Tsinghua Holdings plans to invest CNY50 billion; Qualcomm said that future Snapdragon 800 series and 600 series processors will support Google Tango; Huawei Kirin 960 leaks; Kunshan Govisionox Optoelectronics (GVO) 2nd phase AMOLED start construction;  IC design houses have allocated more of their 28/40nm chip orders to UMC and SMIC due to tight supply from TSMC; Xiaomi wants to be MUJI in the technology segment; etc.

Chipset

MediaTek has unveiled a new single-board computer called the Helio X20 Development Board. The board is based on the 96Boards standard. (CN Beta, TechNews, India Times, Liliputing)

mtk-helio-x20-board

Supercomputer IBM Summit will be delivered to the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory in early 2018. The aim was to deliver a machine running at around 150petaflops. It will use IBM Power9 microprocessors combined with Nvidia Volta graphics processing units (GPUs) providing maths co-processing. (CN Beta, Beta News, The Inquirer)

ibm-summit

New leak shows that Huawei Kirin 960 is using ARM Cortex-A73 CPU, in combined with Cortex-A53 of 4+4 big.LITTLE architecture. GPU is using Mali-G71 but the core numbers are unknown. It is using TSMC 16nm process. (CN Beta, WCCF Tech, Weibo)

hisilicon-kirin-960

Tsinghua Holdings Co. chairman Xu Jinghong indicates that it plans to increase its investment in research on strategic technologies to CNY50 billion (USD7.6 billion) over the next 5 years. It has chosen two main investment directions for the next 5 years: a “foundation rock plan” to develop critical, high-level technologies such as semiconductors and advanced manufacturing, and a “gathering stars plan” to foster start-ups in internet services and other developing sectors. (TechNews, WSJ, Yahoo, NASDAQ)

Qualcomm said it is optimizing its Snapdragon family of processors to run Google Project Tango augmented reality technology. Qualcomm said that future Snapdragon 800 series and 600 series processors will support Tango. (Android Headlines, Venture Beat, Ars Technica)

qualcomm-to-support-google-tango

According to Digitimes, IC design houses have allocated more of their 28/40nm chip orders to UMC and SMIC due to tight supply from TSMC. (Digitimes, press, Hexun)

chinatimes-tsmc-tight-supply

Touch Display

Optical film maker Efun Technology has developed quantum dot enhancement film (QDEF) and will start shipments in 3Q16, with QDEF to be initially used in panels of professional notebooks used outdoor. (ChinaFPD, Semi, Toutiao, Digitimes, press)

efun-quantum

Global panel supply is likely to be tight with prices continuing to rebound in 3Q16, as demand is expected to pick up, according to WitsView. Global panel supply was 1.5% in excess of demand in 1Q16. The oversupply rose to 5.5% in 2Q16, but is expected to decrease to 0.6% in 3Q16, WitsView said. (TechNews, Digitimes, press)

witsview-3q16-panel-supply-demand

Kunshan Govisionox Optoelectronics (GVO) 2nd phase AMOLED start construction, in collaboration with  China Fortune Land Development (CFLD) to build 6G AMOLED line in Hebei. (OfWeek, OLEDW, CINNO)
Citing “field checks”, analysts at Cowen and Co. claim Apple plans to ditch traditional Touch ID home button designs in favor of a solid state capacitive component. (CN Beta, Apple Insider, Business Insider)

apple-force-touch-home

Apple patent titled “Micro device with stabilization post” describes a away of stabilizing LEDs and microchips on a carrier substrate so they’re able to be transferred to another substrate. Apple might be working on a micro-LED display for a future Apple Watch, potentially 2H17. (CN Beta, Apple Insider, USPTO)

apple-micro-led-patent

Universal Display (UDC) announced that it acquired BASF’s entire OLED IP portfolio, for EUR87 million (about USD96 million). (OLED-Info, Business Wire)
Samsung Display has dominated global production and supply of smartphone-use AMOLED panels and will maintain the leading status over the next few years, with its shipments to increase to 560 million units in 2019, hiking 114% from 2015, according to Digitimes Research. (Digitimes, press)

digitimes-samsung-supplied-amoled-2019

Camera

University of Stuttgart has used 3D printing technologies to create a triple-lens camera only 0.1mm wide, smaller than a grain of salt. The technique works by directing ultrashort laser pulses into a liquid which hardens at the absorption of each pulse, gradually forming a microscopic lens element. Excess liquid is then washed away. (CN Beta, Daily Mail, Nature Photonics, Forbes)

stutgart-univ-micro-camera

Memory

Seagate is targeting drones and robots as it looks to add its storage technologies to new devices. (PC World, CN Beta)

Biometrics

Eminent Electronic Technology, an Elan Microelectronics subsidiary specializing in the design of fingerprint sensors, has completed a capital increase by raising nearly NTD200 million (USD6.17 million). (Digitimes, press)
Fingerprint sensor supplier Egis Technology (Egistec) expects to enjoy strong orders through the end of 2016. Egistec has obtained new orders from a South Korea-based customer, and is looking to break into the supply chain of China’s brand handset vendors in 4Q16, according to company chairman and CEO Steve Ro. (Digitimes, press, China Tech)

Connectivity

Huidi Li, EVP of China Mobile indicates that the company is pushing 4G+ development, and this year it is planning to build 300,000 new 4G base stations, at the same time pushing 4G to 5G, aiming to commercialize 5G in 2020. (CN Beta, iFeng, Mobile World Live)

chinamobile-li-hui-di

U.S. Cellular support is now officially available for Google Project Fi customers. T-Mobile and Sprint were the original partners with Google on Project Fi, and now U.S. Cellular joins as the third. (CN Beta, SlashGear, Android Central)

google-project-fi

Smartphones

Cowen & Co.’s Timothy Arcuri suggests that we are on a cusp of huge growth in the portion of the Apple iPhone base that is >2yrs old. Assuming iPhone 7/7+ units are about flat with iPhone 6S/6S+, the portion of the total active iPhone installed base that is >2yrs old is set to hockey-stick from ~33% today (a number that has been consistent for ~6Qs) to ~43% in the next 4-5Qs. This represents growth in >2yrs old units of ~60-70 million by June 2017. (CN Beta, Barron’s, press)

cowen-iphone-sales-forecast

Jeong Jae-Chan, chairman of South Korea’s Fair Trade Commission, revealed the investigation into Apple  over “some matters” pertaining to the company’s dealings there. (Apple Insider, Reuters, ZOL)
Apple has been a “little more conservative” when placing supplier orders in 2016, the COO of Advanced Semiconductor Engineering (ASE) Tien Wu revealed. (Apple Insider, Nikkei, IT Home, DoNews)
Adding to the list of bizarre ways in which smartphones have detracted from our health and well being, doctors have coined a new one, “transient smartphone blindness”. Writing in “The New England Journal of Medicine”, a team in Britain outline the case studies of two women who went to a clinic complaining of temporary blindness in one eye, early in the morning and late at night, respectively. (TechNews, NEJM, Forbes)
China Mobile announces “China Mobile 2016 Devices Quality Report”. Based on third party evaluation on China 4G phones sales, filtering out 82 models of 4G phones. At the price segment of above CNY3000, Samsung and Huawei are evaluated better than Apple iPhone. (ChinaZ, CC Time, Xinhuanet, South CN)

chinamobile-top3-phone-models

Xiaomi founder and CEO Lei Jun indicates that in the coming 3 years, Xiaomi main product is still mobile phones, but the company wants to be MUJI in the technology segment. (CN Beta, Qudong, PC Pop)
Samsung Electronics will abolish its decades-long rigid corporate structure as it copes with weak demand and increasing competition. Samsung will cut its internal ranking system from the current seven levels to four, a move aimed at eradicating a seniority-based evaluation system. (CN Beta, Korea Times)
The US Commerce Department extended until 30 August temporary relief for ZTE from export controls. (Android Headlines, Mobile World Live, WSJ, CNFOL)
Under new Chinese regulations, app marketplaces and their providers, such as Apple, Baidu and Xiaomi are now required to observe user activity and report any user behavior that runs afoul of applicable laws. (Apple Insider, Bloomberg, Android Headlines, Sina, 21CN)
ZTE nubia Z11 is official – 5.5” FHD “bezel-less” display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, 16MP + 8MP cameras, 4GB RAM + 64GB storage (CNY2499) / 6GB RAM + 128GB storage (CNY3499), Android 6.0, LTE, USB Type-C, fingerprint sensor, 3000mAh battery. (CN Beta, GSM Arena, The Droid Guy, Gizmo China, Pocket Now, Nubia)

zte-nubia-z11

British Wileyfox releases 3 new Cyanogen OS powered smartphones with MediaTek MT6735 processor: Wileyfox Spark – 5” HD display, 8MP + 8MP cameras, 1GB RAM, 8GB storage, LTE, 2200mAh battery. Wileyfox Spark+ – 5” HD display, 13MP + 8MP cameras, 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, LTE, 2200mAh battery. Wileyfox Spark X – 5.5” HD display, 13MP + 8MP cameras, 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, LTE, 3000mAh battery. (The Droid Guy, Pocket-Lint, Android Headlines, GSM Arena, Wileyfox)

wileyfox-spark

TCL 750 announced – 5.2” FHD 2.5D curved glass TFT-IPS display, MediaTek Helio P10 MT6755 processor, 16MP PDAF + 8MP cameras, 3GB RAM, 32GB ROM, Android 6.0, LTE, fingerprint sensor, 2800mAh battery, CNY1993. (163, CN Beta, ZOL)

tcl-750

Tablets

Compal Electronics saw non-notebook revenue proportion rise from 23% in 2014 to 28% in 2015 and aims to increase it to 35% in 2016, company president Ray Chen said. (China Times, Digitimes, press)

Wearables

ION Worldwide, a maker of wearable digital recorders that competes with GoPro, has filed for bankruptcy after seeing its revenue drop significantly in 2015. (CN Beta, WSJ)
At a shareholder’s meeting, HTC CEO Cher Wang and head of global sales Chang Chia-lin revealed efforts to establish a wholly owned subsidiary that will specifically focus on growing HTC’s budding virtual reality business to help offset the company’s overall dismal performance in the market. (CN Beta, Taipei Times, SlashGear)
Tes.com, home to the world’s largest network of educators, and Google for Education are working together to help teachers create and share lessons worldwide. It will make it easier for teachers to access and share digital resources, and create lessons to accompany virtual reality field trips using Google Expeditions. (CN Beta, Qudong, Forbes, TechCrunch, Yahoo)

google-expeditions google-expeditions-toolkit

Doppler Labs launches Here One wireless earbuds, which have multiple processors that help identify background noise and create an ambient filter on the fly, using directional microphone arrays in each of the two independent earpieces. Pre-order price is USD299. (CN Beta, CNET, 9to5Mac)

dopplerlabs-hearone

Internet of Things

Strategy Analytics assessed consumer interest in, usage of, and satisfaction with in-car infotainment features. While the AM/FM radio remains the top source for infotainment in the car, daily use continues to steadily decline.  The percentage of consumers who feel that an in-vehicle CD player is a “must-have” feature continues to fall to historic lows.  However, no new infotainment source has clearly risen to take their place. (EE Trend, Strategy Analytics)
German industrial group Siemens AG plans to invest EUR1 billion over the next 5 years in a new startups unit to help it develop businesses in areas such as artificial intelligence and decentralized electrification. The new unit is named “next47” led by Siegfried Russwurm. (CN Beta, 4-Traders, Business Insider)

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