09-30: ZTE Axon M reportedly to sport dual Full HD displays, which can fold out; Apple is reportedly considering getting the LCD displays from JDI for its iPhones in 2018; etc.

Chipsets

MediaTek has launched a new chipset MT6739, which brings improved connectivity and display features to entry-level handsets. One of this SoC’s main selling points is its support for dual VoLTE with Dual SIM Dual Standby, a feature that allows dual SIM handsets to connect and make calls using two LTE networks simultaneously.  (Android Headlines, Indian Express, Benzinga, Fudzilla, MediaTek, iFeng)

Touch Display

The new ZTE device, codenamed Axon Multy and could launch as the Axon M reportedly to sport dual Full HD displays, which fold out into a 6.8” display with 1,920×2,160 pixels resolution. When folded, the handset looks to function as a regular smartphone with a relatively sleek frame. (Android Authority, Android Central, TechWeb, Sohu)

Apple is reportedly considering getting the LCD displays from Japan Display Inc (JDI) for its iPhones in 2018. Japan Display’s Full Active LCD displays are also already being used by Xiaomi for its Mi Mix 2 smartphone, which features an edge-to-edge display and a very slim bottom bezel. (CN Beta, BGR, Gizmo China, WSJ, IB Times)

Sensory

Luminar Technologies, a Silicon Valley startup maker of LiDAR sensors, has formed a key partnership with plans to supply Toyota’s advanced research division with high-tech optical devices that give self-driving cars an ability to see that surpasses the human eye.  (CN Beta, Photonics, TechCrunch, Recode, Fortune, The Verge)

Connectivity

Samsung Electronics and SK Telecom have demonstrated communication between 4G and 5G networks. Samsung and SK Telecom successfully established communications between the LTE network that uses 2.6 GHz frequency band, with the 5G network that uses the 28 GHz and 3.5 GHz frequency band. Samsung said the communication was made without any disruptions, enabling clear streaming between the two networks.  (CN Beta, ZDNet, Telecom Paper, Korea Herald)

Smartphones

Sony India’s managing director Kenichiro Hibi said that the company will introduce an “all-new design language” to better compete with 18:9 devices. (Android Authority, Indian Express, Sina, Sohu)

According to estimates from BayStreet Research, Essential has sold around 5,000 smartphones since it started shipping the PH-1 nearly a month ago. (CN Beta, Neowin, Android Authority, Fierce Wireless)

KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo indicates that worries over a slower than normal Apple iPhone release are exaggerated by an “excessively negative” market. The analyst pegs iPhone production as split for iPhone X and iPhone 8/8 Plus models, with Apple dedicating a full half of its smartphone manufacturing might toward the new flagship phone. (CN Beta, Apple Insider)

A base model Apple iPhone 8 with a 4.7” screen and 64GB of storage includes material costs of USD247.51, up from USD237.94 for the 32GB base model iPhone 7 from 2016, an analysis by IHS found. However, the new device costs USD699, while the 2016 iPhone started at USD649 for the 32GB version. That means the iPhone 8 BOM equals about 35% of the sales price. (Apple Insider, Bloomberg, IHS Markit, press, costs, TechNews)

Jeff Pu of Taipei-based Yuanta Investment Consulting reveals that Apple iPhone manufacturer Foxconn churned out 2M units of the iPhone X in Sept 2017, and in Oct that number should rise to 10M. He said that Foxconn will have assembled a total of 40M iPhone X phones by end 2017, lower than his estimate of 45M earlier 2017.  (CN Beta, Fast Company, Asia Nikkei)

Nokia 8 is launched in India – 5.3” QHD display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, rear dual 13MP RBG-13MP monochrome + front 13MP cameras, 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, IP54 certified,  front fingerprint scanner, 3090mAh battery, INR36,999. (Android Central, Amazon)

Alcatel Idol 5 is announced with Cricket with a new VR headset Uni360 (sold separately) – 5.2” FHD display, MediaTek Helio P20 processor, 12MP + 8MP cameras, 2GB RAM, 32GB storage,  2850mAh battery, USD199. (Android Central, Android Authority, Phone Arena, The Verge)

Panasonic P99 is launched in India – 5” HD IPS LCD display, quad-core processor, 8MP + 5MP cameras, 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, Android 7.1, 2000mAh battery, INR7,490. (Android Headlines, NDTV, The Mobile Indian)

LG K7i is launched in India with Ultrasonic Mosquito Away technology – 5” FWVGA 845×480 on-cell IPS LCD display, quad-core processor, 8MP + 5MP cameras, 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, Android 6.0, 2500mAh battery, INR7,990. (GSM Arena, Fonearena)

Wearables

Asymco founder and analyst Horace Dediu estimates that Apple sold about 15M Watches in the last 12 months at an average price of about USD330. This puts the Apple Watch revenue run rate at USD4.9B. Overall, about 33M Apple Watch units have been sold since launch and they generated about USD12B in sales. (Phone Arena, Asymco, CN Beta)

Internet of Things

Amazon has revealed a new and improved Amazon Echo smart speaker. The device features an upgraded audio system and an updated design. The 2nd generation Echo touts immersive sound thanks to an all-new speaker architecture that packs in Dolby processing, a dedicated tweeter, and a 2.5” down-firing woofer.  (Android Authority, Amazon, Sohu, Sina, JRJ, CN Beta)

Amazon has revealed the Echo Spot, priced at USD130, a small, globe-shaped smart speaker with a circular display that is reminiscent of the Echo Show. It has a little 2.5” display and camera on its top.  (Android Central, Amazon, Engadget, Sina, Tom’s Guide)

Amazon has unveiled Echo Plus, a smart speaker that also has a built-in smart home hub, which can link to other Zigbee smart home devices, such as Philips Hue lights. The Echo Plus will come with a Philips Hue White bulb. It is priced at USD150. (Engadget, Tom’s Guide, Amazon)

Amazon has revealed the Echo Button, a light-up, bluetooth-connected accessory that pairs with the company’s Amazon Echo smart speaker. These buttons will connect to the Echo using an API and they do light up.  (Android Central, Amazon, Android Headlines, Sina, Ynet, Cool3C)

Amazon has introduced a new USD70 Fire TV with HDR and 4K capabilities. The redesigned Fire TV is a small flat square dongle with an HDMI cable sticking out, and it again ships with an Alexa voice remote included. (The Verge, Tech Hive, Expert Reviews, Sina, Amazon)

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