11-01: Samsung Electronics is going to extend its DRAM production lines in 2018; GigaDevice Semiconductor and Hefei RuiLi Integrated Circuit Manufacture (formerly Hefei ChangXin IC) will team up to develop 19nm DRAM; etc.

Chipsets

Dawning Information Industry (or Sugon) announced first AI server powered by Cambricon’s AI chipset, dubbed “Phaneron”. Sugon SVP Sha Chaoqun introducing, Phaneron is primarily for deep learning dedicated for online inference business environment. (Laoyaoba, Kuaixun, Sina, Xinhuanet, HiNet)

MediaTek has announced financial results of 3Q17 ended 30 Sept 2017. The 3Q17 revenue was NTD63,651M, up 9.6% sequentially, and down 18.8% year-over-year. Net income for the quarter was NTD5,061M, up 129% sequentially, and down 35.4% year-over-year. (UDN, Laoyaoba, MediaTek)

Currently MediaTek still focuses on 12nm even though 10nm is gaining a lot of attention in the industry thanks to AI. MediaTek co-CEO Rick Tsai indicates that 12nm is a very good and mature technology, and next step will move into 7nm. The company is working with foundry vendor and will have products in 2H19. (Laoyaoba, UDN)

Touch Display

According to DSCC, placing the 55” OLED fab in China is the only way to make 55” OLED TV panels profitable. DSCC estimates that the subsidies will reduce LG Display’s (LGD) depreciation costs by 65%. Beyond lower-wages in China compared to Korea and the proximity to the huge Chinese market, LGD is looking for a subsidy from the local government. LGD’s Guangzhou OLED line is supposed to be a joint-venture with the local government, where LGD will hold a 70% share. (Display Supply Chain, press, OLED-Info)

Camera

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo had previously claimed that the TrueDepth 3D camera technology found on the Apple iPhone X’s front camera would make its way to the rear cameras in 2018. He has now changed his prediction, saying that Apple will not do this and would focus on cost cutting and launching new models on time with stable shipments instead. (Ubergizmo, Apple Insider, Yivian)

Memory

Samsung Electronics is going to extend its DRAM production lines at its semiconductor plants located in Hwasung and Pyeongtaek. About 60,000 DRAM units will be produced additionally from Hwasung and Pyeongtaek plants in 2018. If Samsung increases amount of output according to its tentative plan, more than 20% of supplies based on production capacity of entire DRAMs will be added additionally to markets. (TechNews, Money DJ, ET News)

China-based GigaDevice Semiconductor and Hefei RuiLi Integrated Circuit Manufacture (formerly Hefei ChangXin IC) will team up to develop 19nm DRAM process technology for the production of 12” wafers at a total investment of CNY18B (USD2.71B), a move widely seen to usher in a new stage of competition in China’s DRAM market. (CN Beta, Laoyaoba, Sohu, Digitimes, Reuters, Digitimes, press)

Biometrics

Fingerprint Cards (FPC) has developed an ultrasonic sensing technology with the objective of enabling fingerprints to be captured anywhere on the display of a smartphone or any device. FPC will engage with key customers in 1H18 to further develop the technology and to bring it to mass market. (Laoyaoba, Reuters, India Times, 4-Traders, Globe Newswire, FPC)

Connectivity

Starting with Google Play Services 11.7 on Android 6.0 Marshmallow and higher, users will be able to take advantage of the new Fast Pair feature. Fast Pair makes the relatively easy process of pairing Bluetooth devices even easier by scanning for nearby Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) broadcasts and prompting user to pair with them. (Android Authority, Google Blog)

Smartphones

Samsung Electronics releases its 3Q17 financials. It has recorded a revenue of KRW62.05T, an increase of KRW14.23T year-on-year while operating profit for the quarter stood at KRW14.53T, an increase of KRW9.33T year-on-year. The bump in the profit is largely due to strong demand for high-performance memory chipsets for servers and flagship mobile devices.  (Sammy Hub, Android Authority, CNET, NDTV, Samsung, Sina)

Samsung has announced a new leadership team consisting of three new co-CEOs. The new CEOs, Kim Ki-nam, Kim Hyun-suk, and Koh Dong-jin, will replace the current Samsung Electronics CEO Kwon Oh-hyun.  (Android Authority, Caixin, P5W)

After rapidly losing ground to Xiaomi in the overall smartphone rankings, market leader Samsung has lost not just its top spot in the premium segment to Apple in the July-September period, but has been relegated – for the first time ever – to #3 behind OnePlus in a segment that is seeing competition like never before. Samsung, however, disputed the findings of Counterpoint Research and said it continued to lead the segment by end-sales.  (CN Beta, India Times, Times Now)

Sony has announced its consolidated financial results for fiscal 2Q17 ended 30 Sept 2017 (1 Jul ~ 30 Sept 2017). Sony has raked in JPY2T (about USD18.25B) in revenue and managed to get a net profit of USD1.15B. The most significant earners are the Semiconductors department, which includes image sensors for mobile products, and the Game & Network Services which accounts for the PlayStation 4 sales. (GSM Arena, Sony, Laoyaoba)

China’s top-4 handset vendors Huawei, Xiaomi, OPPO and vivo together will ship a total of over 400M mobile phones globally in 2017, and their combined shipments to their domestic maket will account for over 60% of China’s handset market in 2017, according to Digitimes. Looking into 2018, 7 out of the world’s top-10 handset vendors will be China-based—Huawei, OPPO, vivo, Xiaomi, Lenovo, ZTE and Gionee. (Digitimes, press, Laoyaoba)

Nokia 2 is announced by HMD Global – 5” HD LTPS LCD display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 212 processor, 8MP + 5MP cameras, 1GB RAM, 8GB storage, Android 7.1.1, 4100mAh battery, EUR99. (Android Authority, Android Central, Gizmo China)

PCs / Tablets

Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun denies the rumor of “Xiaomi tablet project has been cancelled”, also reveals that the next-generation tablet is under R&D. (Android Headlines, C114, Sohu, Sina)

LG G Pad F2 8.0 is announced in US – 8” 1280×800 WXGA display, MediaTek MT6750 processor, 5MP + 5MP cameras, 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, Android 7.1, 3000mAh battery, USD150 on Sprint. (GSM Arena, LG)

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