12-31 Happy New Year: Foxconn to build and operate a new TV LCD flat-panel factory in Guangzhou; Huawei consumer business including smartphone probably grew sales 42% to CNY178B in 2016; etc.

Touch / Display

Foxconn and Sharp joint company Sakai Display Products (SDP) announced to build and operate a new TV LCD flat-panel factory in Guangzhou, China, which will cost USD8.8B. Foxconn said that the LCD factory will make Gen-10.5 8K displays, along with screens for smart TVs and electronic whiteboards. Production is expected to begin in 2019. (Android Authority, Reuters, CN Beta, SCMP)

Battery

General Motor has announced partnership with Boston-based start-up WiTricity to develop wireless charging pads for electric vehicles, a “charging pad” that could be installed beneath a layer of concrete or other garage flooring material. (CN Beta, WCCFTech, Elektrek, GM Authority)

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Smartphones

Foxconn Electronics is automating production at its factories in China in 3 phases, aiming to fully automate entire factories eventually, according to general manager Dai Jia-peng for Foxconn’s Automation Technology Development Committee. (Apple Insider, Digitimes, press, CN Beta)

foxconn-automation

Huawei consumer business group CEO Richard Yu indicates that the consumer business including smartphone probably grew sales 42% to CNY178B. Huawei smartphone shipment in 2016 is estimated reaching 139M units, 29% increase on year, which basically has achieved the year target. (CN Beta, Bloomberg, Android Headlines, Sina, My Drivers)

huawei-ceo-richard-yu

China’s largest telecommunications equipment maker Huawei expects a 32% rise in revenue to CNY520B (USD75B) in 2016, rotating Chief Executive Officer Eric Xu said. That is down from the 37% growth it posted in 2015. The company now needs to re-tool its management approach to zero in on customers’ needs, while staunching costs and avoiding “blind optimism and rhetoric”. (Bloomberg, Android Headlines, Reuters.cn, Sohu, My Drivers)

huawei-ceo-eric-xu

Apple will trim production of its iPhone family around 10% on the year in 1Q17, according to calculations by The Nikkei based on data from suppliers. This comes after the company slashed output in Jan-Mar 2016 due to accumulated inventory of the iPhone 6s line at the end of 2015. That experience led Apple to curb production of the iPhone 7, introduced in Sept., by around 20%. (Apple Insider, Asia Nikkei, Phone Arena, Laoyaoba)

Wearables

Apple is seeing strong demand for its AirPods during the year-end holidays and its strong sales are expected to benefit the device’s manufacturer Inventec. (Apple Insider, UDN, Digitimes, Sina, Sohu)

Steve LaValle, the former chief scientist for Oculus who is now a professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will join Huawei as the chief scientist of VR/AR/MR, in charge of global research and product development. (TechNews, China Post, CRI English)

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Internet of Things

A new partnership between Nikon’s subsidiary Optos, and Alphabet’s research organization Verily Life Sciences will look at developing new machine learning-enabled retina screening processes to help diagnose diabetic retinopathy and diabetic macular edema. (Android Central, Nikon)

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