05-03: Samsung Galaxy C line allegedly will be the first Samsung handset to carry two cameras on back; Samsung is going to carry out investments of up to USD2.64B (KRW3T) to extend its 17 Line; etc.

Touch Display

Samsung Display has begun developing VR headset-specific AMOLED panel. It is 5.5” 3840×2160 resolution (4K UHD) with 800ppi. Samsung will reportedly start using this product on their new generation of Gear VR in 2017. (EE World, Laoyaoba)

TrendForce finds that the 2016 global shipments of IGZO tablet panels totaled 19.8M units, registering a massive and above expected annual growth of 292%. As Apple will use the technology for the new iPad Pro, TrendForce expects annual worldwide shipments of IGZO tablet panels to grow for the second consecutive year by 46%, totaling around 29M units. (TrendForce, TrendForce[cn])

Micro LED fundamental technology is to put micro RGB Micro LED on a substrate, and forming different size of Micro LED display. From the technical point of view, Micro LED has overcome limits of LCD and OLED panel. For instance, Micro LED can reach 1900PPI, and compared to LCD and OLED it is less power consuming, more responsive, having higher brightness, color and density. (TechNews, article, Laoyaoba, Sohu)

trendforce-micro-led trendforce-micro-led-supply-chain

Camera

LG Innotek has reported that its operating profit in 1Q17 increased by 164 times to KRW66.8B (USD59.6M) from the same period last year. Its revenue hiked 37.6% to KRW1.64T and net profit reached KRW36.6B. Its dual camera module business has driven the growth. (Laoyaoba, ET News, Digitimes, The Investor)

lginnotek-1q17-financial

Samsung Galaxy C line allegedly will be the first Samsung handset to carry two cameras on back. The sketch also shows that Galaxy C will sport the slotted antenna design instead of those unsightly antenna lines that run on the top and bottom of a phone.  (Phone Arena, Droidholic, PC Online, ZOL, 91.c0m)

samsung-galaxy-c-dual-camera

Lite-On CEO Chen Guangzhong indicates that in 2Q17 thanks to cloud computing, LED and outdoor lighting, as well as high-end camera module market demand, the overall operating performance is better than 2Q17, including revenues and profit. Additionally, the company thinks positive of 3D sensing camera module application, thus in 2H17 will start expanding production to increase high-end camera module market share. (Laoyaoba, Digitimes, EE World)

Memory

The sharp upswing in prices of mobile DRAM products is expected to hold back the growth of average per device memory content for smartphones in2017, says  TrendForce. Furthermore, TrendForce has lowered the estimated average memory content of smartphones for 2017, from 3.7GB to 3.2GB. The revised average memory content figure represents an increase of 33.4% compared with the 2016 figure. (TechNews, TrendForce, TrendForce[cn])

Samsung is going to carry out investments of up to USD2.64B (KRW3T) to extend its 17 Line, which is located in Hwasung, for DRAM. Based on input of wafers per month, 17 Line was able to produce 40,000 sheets per month at that time.  (CN Beta, ET News)

samsung-l7-dram-line

Intel is revamping its enterprise SSD lineup with 2 new offerings that feature TLC 3D NAND and a new SSD controller that brings a range of new features, including increased performance and simplified management capabilities, with P4500 and P4600. (CN Beta, Laoyaoba, AnandTech, Tom’s Hardware)

intel-p4500-p4600

Biometrics

LG Innotek is reportedly developing 3D facial recognition module for smartphone, which the company will allegedly supply 3D facial recognition module to Apple iPhone 8. It is estimated that 3D sensing module will drive LG Innotek’s 2H17 profit, which will bring in about KRW320B (about USD280M) revenues to the company. (EE World, Laoyaoba)

Connectivity

T-Mobile’s CTO Neville Ray claims that when the final 5G standards are confirmed, and the first smartphones that support those standards are released, T-Mobile will be able to launch its 5G network very quickly. The first such locations on the network should go live in 2019, and the full nationwide rollout of the 5G network should happen in 2020. (Android Authority, T-Mobile, T-Mobile, 163)

AT&T is officially bringing its “5G Evolution” to a limited number of customers in Austin, Texas. In reality, they will not really be using a 5G network; they will just be getting faster speeds on AT&T’s current “improved” 4G network. (Android Authority, AT&T, CNET, HSW, CC Time, 163)

att-5g-evolution

Granted by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Apple’s U.S. patent for “Electronic tag transmissions of custom-order nutritional information” describes a method of encoding RFID tags with details regarding one or more food items. The tags then transmit nutritional variables, such as caloric value, fat content, sugar content and more, to a waiting NFC-capable device like iPhone or Apple Watch.  (Apple Insider, USPTO, CN Beta)

apple-rfid-tagging-food

Smartphones

According Counterpoint Research, Samsung regained the top spot from Apple in 1Q17 due to higher than expected shipments of 80M smartphones. Samsung ended the quarter with significant inventory of the new A series and older J series smartphones. Smartphone shipments reached 375M units in 1Q17. The smartphone market grew 11.2% annually. (Counterpoint, press, Android Headlines, Sina)

counterpoint-1q17-smartphone

Apple held USD256.8B cash on hand, with roughly 93% of it (USD239B) held overseas awaiting possible repatriation tax reform —if the U.S. government is inclined to cooperate. (Apple Insider, MSN, WSJ, CNBC, CNN, Sina)

apple-cash-2

According to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, Apple spent a total of USD2.78B on R&D for F2Q17, equal to just over 5% of quarterly net sales. The figure represents an increase of USD266M from the same period a year ago.  (Apple Insider, The Motley Fool)

motleyfool-apple-randd

Apple shipped 50.8M iPhones in the Mar 2017 quarter, which was down from the 51.2M the company shipped in F2Q16. Looking forward to the next quarter, Apple’s F3Q17, Apple estimates revenue between USD43.5B~45.5B. (Apple Insider, CN Beta, Apple)

apple-2q17-financial

Huawei Consumer Group announced that Huawei has shipped 34.55M units of smartphones in 1Q17, a 21.6% increase on year. Huawei indicates that in 52 countries the yearly growth has exceeded 50%, while 32 countries of which has exceeded 100%. (CN Beta, GizChina)

huawei-1q17

A study conducted by Anindya Ghose in New York University suggest that commuters in crowded subway trains are about twice as likely to respond to a mobile offer by making a purchase vis-à-vis those in non-crowded trains. The response rate across the entire sample was 5 times higher than the average response rate of mobile coupons and 2x the response rate for location-based mobile coupons. (Re/code, TechNews)

crowded-subway-ads-shop

India is the most important market for OPPO outside of its home market, Sky Li, global VP and India president indicated. Having risen up the ranks sharply in India, the company has been expanding its local manufacturing and is planning to begin exports to the Middle East, North Africa and other South East Asian countries from India in the next 2~3 years, Li said. (Laoyaoba, Economic Times)

JD.com Inc. is reportedly in talks to make a major investment in Indonesia’s PT Tokopedia to speed its expansion into Southeast Asia’s largest economy. JD’s potential investment may propel Jakarta-based Tokopedia past USD1B in valuation. (CN Beta, Bloomberg, Tech Wire Asia, Digital Commerce 360)

Smartron, an Indian startup aiming to build a product ecosystem in the country, announced the launch of srt.phone – 5.5” FHD IPS LCD display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 652 processor, 13MP PDAF + 5MP cameras, 4GB RAM, 32 / 64GB storage, Android 7.1.1, 3000mAh battery. (Android Authority)

smartron-srtphone

PCs / Tablets

Microsoft has launched a new version of Windows 10, called Windows 10 S. It is aimed primarily at budget PCs for the education sector. (GSM Arena, Microsoft, Sina, 163)

microsoft-windows-10-s

Microsoft unveiled a new device running Windows 10 S, Surface Laptop – 13.5” PixelSense  2256×1504 touch display, Intel Core i5 / i7 processor, 4 / 8 / 16GB RAM, 128 / 256 / 512GB SSD, from USD999. Microsoft also announced that its partners will be offering Windows 10 education PCs starting at USD189 2017 summer. Devices will be coming from Acer, Asus, Dell, Fujitsu, HP, Samsung, and Toshiba.  (VentureBeat, Liliputing, Pocket-Lint, CN Beta)

microsoft-surface-laptop

HP and Acer are the first two hardware partners to announce laptops running Windows 10 S: HP ProBook x360 Education Edition – 11.6” 1366×768 display, Intel Celeron processor, 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, USD299. Acer TravelMate Spin B1 Convertible – 11.6” 1080p touch display, Intel Celeron processor, 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, USD400. (The Verge, Pocket-Lint)

hp-probook-x360-education-edition acer-travelmate-spin-b1-convertible

Wearables

Principal Program Manager at Microsoft Brandon Bray has revealed that Microsoft has planned for the VR side of things when the first Windows Holographic headsets come later 2017. Bray also revealed that currently 91% of the ‘holographic’ apps built for Windows headsets (including HoloLens) were constructed using the Unity game engine (CN Beta, RoadtoVR)

microsoft-windows-vr-os

Huami Technology founder and CEO Wang Wang revealed that Huami-manufactured Xiaomi Band is sold 30M units accumulatively, after Fitbit ranked as number 2. In 2016, the company sales exceeded CNY1.5B. (IT Home, Laoyaoba, Sohu)

huami-ceo-wangwang

Internet of Things

Tencent has announced that it is opening a new artificial intelligence (AI) lab in Seattle, with speech recognition expert Dr. Yu Dong, formerly a principal researcher at Microsoft’s Speech and Dialog Group, leading the initiative. (VentureBeat, PR Newswire, Sohu)

tencent-ai-yudong

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