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07-25: Qualcomm is announcing the final version of their mmWave antenna module; Sony has announced the upcoming release of the IMX586; etc.

Chipsets

Qualcomm is announcing the final version of their mmWave antenna module, the QTM052. It is a complete antenna module, integrating the necessary mmWave radio transceiver, RF front end, power management IC, and the phased antenna array necessary to send and receive signals. (CN Beta, VentureBeat, AnandTech, The Verge, Forbes, Qualcomm)

Camera

Sony has announced the upcoming release of the IMX586 stacked CMOS image sensor for smartphone cameras. The new sensor features 48 effective MP, the industry’s highest pixel count. The new product achieved a world-first ultra-compact pixel size of 0.8μm, making it possible to pack 48MP onto a 1/2-type (8.0mm diagonal) unit. (Phone Arena, Sony, IT Home)

Sensory

WIN Semiconductor expects vertical cavity surface emitting lasers (VCSEL) sales in 2H18 to be less than previously expected. WIN Semiconductor’s 1Q18 inventory days are about 115 days, compared with 117 days in 1Q16 and 114 days in 1Q17, it is not obviously high. The recent stock price weakness mainly reflects the market’s doubts about VCSEL inventory leading to 3Q18 possible peak season. The market expects Apple’s new iPhone shipments, and whether the AR application adopts stereo imaging after 2019, causing the potential VCSEL usage to decline. (Laoyaoba, China Times, TechNews, China Times, Barron’s, Street Insider)

Connectivity

China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) has handed mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) licenses to 15 more companies including Alibaba, Xiaomi, etc. (Laoyaoba, Sohu, BJ News, JRJ, MIIT)

Phone

Tencent has announced that the company and Huawei have jointly established a lab aiming to optimize the gaming experience. Tencent has already established a strategic collaboration with OPPO, vivo and Samsung. Xiaomi may soon with with Tencent for gaming optimization working with. (CN Beta, EXP Review)

Samsung is rumored seriously considering scrapping the Galaxy Note brand completely. Reasons behind such a drastic move are given as deteriorating profitability due to smartphone saturation, and delayed upgrade cycles as customers hold onto their devices for longer.  (CN Beta, Forbes, The Bell)

Samsung is allegedly developing a smartphone that is specially designed for gaming. (Gizmo China, Tencent)

Samsung has revealed that it has managed to sell 2M units of Galaxy J8 and Galaxy J6 in India since launched in May and Jul 2018, respectively. (GSM Arena, Samsung, Gizmo China, Sohu, Baijiahao)

Facebook plans to set up “an innovation hub … to support Chinese developers, innovators and start-ups.”  Its function will be similar to Facebook hubs currently operating around the world, including France, Brazil, India and South Korea. (VOA, Sina, NY Times, CNN, Variety)

Transsion’s sub-brand Tecno CAMON iTWIN is launched in India – 6” 720×1440 HD+ IPS, Qualcomm Snapdragon 425, rear dual 13MP-2MP + front 13MP, 3GB+32GB, Android 8.0, 4000mAh, INR11,499. (GizChina, Economic Times, News18, The Mobile Indian)

LG is launching K11+ and K11α in Brazil, featuring 5.3” 720×1280 HD+ IPS, MediaTek MT6750, rear fingerprint scanner, Android 7.1.2, 3000mAh: K11+ – rear 13MP + front 5MP, 3GB+32GB, BRL1,199 (EUR270). K11α – rear 8MP + front 5MP, 2GB+16GB, BRL999 (EUR220). (GSM Arena, LG, Price Kart)

Xiaomi Mi A2 and A2 Lite are launched in 40 markets globally: Mi A2 – 5.99” 2160✖1080 FHD+ IPS, Qualcomm Snapdragon 660, rear dual 12MP-20MP + front 20MP, 4/6GB + 32/64/128GB, rear fingerprint scanner, 3010mAh, from EUR249. Mi A2 Lite – 5.84” 2220✖1080 FHD+ IPS, Qualcomm Snapdragon 625, rear dual 12MP-5MP + front 5MP, 3/4GB + 32/64GB, rear fingerprint scanner, 4000mAh, from EUR179. (Android Authority, Android Central)

Huawei Honor 9N is launched in India – 5.84” 1080×2280 FHD+ IPS, Huawei Kirin 659, rear dual 13MP-2MP + front 16MP, 3/4GB + 32/64/128GB, Android 8.0, 3000mAh, from INR11,999. (Android Authority, GSM Arena, Flipkart)

Automotive

Ford is planning to spend USD4B on developing self-driving cars by 2023, the automaker said Tuesday, in an announcement that also detailed the creation of a new spin-off entity cleverly titled Ford Autonomous Vehicles LLC. (CN Beta, TechCrunch, Jalopink)

Fintech

Google and New York City-based blockchain startup Digital Asset have announced a new partnership meant to bring the latter’s digital ledger technologies to the Internet juggernaut’s cloud services. Digital Asset’s developer tools and blockchain offerings have hence been integrated into the Google Cloud Platform. (Android Headlines, Digital Trends, The Verge, Caijing, 36Kr)

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