10-30: Panasonic has announced the development of the world’s first 8K organic sensor and 8K camera system; Micron Technology has announced the opening of a new plant in Taichung; etc.

Chipsets

In addition to US, Intel has a number of fabs worldwide. According to Intel, the production capacity crisis is due to the high demand, resulting in Intel’s 2018 revenue forecast is expected to increase by USD45B. The increase in revenue is mainly achieved by the average selling price (ASP). In terms of sales volume, the shipment of PC market in 2Q18 actually has fallen by 1%. Intel 14nm production capacity shortage are due to: 1) multi-core chip increase leads to a decline in total shipment; 2) 300 series chipset upgrade to 14nm process; and 3) full support for Apple’s baseband supply. (My Drivers, PC Online, Hot Hardware)

Volkswagen and Mobileye, the computer vision firm owned by Intel, have announced  a plan to launch a commercial self-driving ride-hailing service in Israel in 2019. Volkswagen will supply a fleet of electric cars, Mobileye will handle the self-driving technology, and Champion Motors, Israel’s second largest car importer and distributor, will run fleet management operations. (The Verge, Intel, ChinaZ)

Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) CEO Lisa Su indicates that the company will be “competitive in high-end graphics”. They are making high-performing quality products and building a solid long-term foundation. (CN Beta, My Drivers, Barron’s, eTeknik)

Touch Display

Microsoft Research’s Lumia 640 prototype smartphone features a secondary display in the form of an e-ink cover. The concept smartphone Display Cover is meant to “improve productivity and convenience” and offer consumers a practical solution at the same time. The secondary display is a display cover that does not feature full-touch functionality.  (Phone Arena, Microsoft, My Drivers)

Camera

Panasonic has announced the development of the world’s first 8K organic sensor and 8K camera system. 8K Multipurpose Camera AK – SHB 810 is a compact, lightweight, box – type camera that uses a PL lens mount. Equipped with 8K organic sensor which will be the first in the world.  (Engadget, Photo Rumors, Panasonic, NPhoto)

Storage

Effective 30 Oct 2018, the US Department of Commerce has taken action to restrict exports to Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit by adding them to the entities that cannot purchase components, software and technology goods from U.S. firms. Jinhua poses a significant risk of becoming involved in activities that are contrary to the national security interests of the U.S. (My Drivers, Commerce, Sina, Reuters, Market Watch)

Micron Technology has announced the opening of a new plant in Taichung, central Taiwan that will be dedicated to providing backend services for the manufacture of DRAM memory. Micron indicated it has a total of about 7,000 employees stationed in Taiwan.  (Digitimes, press, Focus Taiwan, UDN, Epoch Times)

Battery

Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 4.0 (QC 4.0) can deliver an 18W power output with a handful of improvements over its predecessor, like Dual Charge, which allows power to flow through two paths rather than one, ensuring faster charging speeds while keeping the device cool. The next generation of Quick Charge, which is probably going to be called Quick Charge 5.0, is expected to debut on 2019 smartphones with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8150/855. (CN Beta, Gizmo China, XDA Developers, Liliputing)

Biometrics

According to Sigmaintell, fingerprint scanner penetration reaches near 72% by 2Q18 in smartphone industry. Global shipments of in-display fingerprint sensors are expected to top 42M units in 2018 thanks to increasing adoption of fingerprint recognition technology by smartphone vendors, according to Sigmaintell. GF Securities has slightly different forecast—about 30M units. (GF Securities report, Digitimes press, Sigmaintell data)

Connectivity

AT&T has announced that it has successfully completed the first browsing session on a commercial-grade 5G hotspot device. The test is conducted in Waco, Texas, which is one of the cities where the carrier says it will rollout the 5G network first. The device used was a NetGear Nighthawk 5G Mobile Hotspot. (Ubergizmo, AT&T)

Phone

Samsung is accelerating to gain market share in the mid-range segment in China, launching first quad-cam equipped smartphone. Telecommunication expert Kang Zhao indicates that Samsung’s positioning and strategy in the China market has changed. In addition to the high-end segment, Samsung has accelerated into the lower-end market. Samsung pays more attention to market segmentation, and its low-price strategy will also have an impact on the China mobile phone market. Customized mobile phones may become the future direction of Samsung. (Sina, My Drivers, Sina)

Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong will head to Vietnam on a business trip aimed at checking Samsung’s key smartphone production lines amid a decline in its global market share. Samsung has invested USD17.3B in 8 factories and one research and development center in Vietnam. (CN Beta, Yonhap News, Vietnam Insider, Business Korea)

Meizu founder Huang Zhang indicates that 1st gen of 5G product is only a trial, 2nd gen will be an advanced version, and at least 3rd gen is for early adopters, and not yet mature enough to be mass. Thus, normal consumers should not be too anxious to buy an immature 5G product. (CN Beta, Sina)

AT&T has invested in a new white-label device manufacturer that will start supplying exclusive AT&T-branded phones to the carrier by the end of 2019. Emblem Solutions, a new device maker, has secured an investment from AT&T in exchange for 2 board seats and an exclusive agreement for devices to be sold by AT&T and its prepaid channels, including Cricket Wireless. (Phone Arena, Fierce Wireless, PR Newswire)

Consumers in India spent more than INR50,000 crore in FY 2018 on purchasing smartphones made by just the top 4 Chinese brands—Xiaomi, OPPO, vivo and Huawei Honor, nearly twice what they spent on them in the previous fiscal. That trend is set to continue with Chinese brands dominating the Indian smartphone market. (CN Beta, Indian Express, India Times)

Inspired by EU proposals to impose a tax based on the revenue of tech companies rather than their profit, South Korea, India, Mexico, Chile and many other countries across Asia and Latin America are contemplating new taxes on foreign tech firms. (My Drivers, WSJ, Seeking Alpha)

Due to “slowing demand”, Rosenblatt Securities’ analyst Jun Zhang has trimmed Apple iPhone XR shipment forecast by 3M units due to “weak preorders”.  He believes that Apple will start reducing iPhone XS and iPhone XR production by a combined 6M units in Nov / Dec 2018, with 2M of them being the iPhone XR, and iPhone XS units hit for 1M.  Rosenblatt is revising estimates to show new iPhone production of 88M units and shipments of the new models 76M~77M units. (Phone Arena, Apple Insider, GizChina, CN Beta)

Jefferies Financial Group analyst Timothy O’Shea believes that Apple’s revenue will be 25% derived from Services by 2020. At the same time, Services will account for 40% of Apple’s gross profit. (CN Beta, Apple Insider)

Samsung reportedly is removing 3.mm audio jack from its Galaxy S10 series to be launched in 2019. Samsung is allegedly launching 3 new models of Galaxy S10. (CN Beta, SlashGear, Bloomberg)

OnePlus 6T is announced – 6.41” 2340×1080 FHD+ AMOLED, Qualcomm Snapdragon 845, rear dual 16MP (1.22µm)-20MP + front 16MP, 6+128GB / 8+128/256GB, Android 9.0, in-display fingerprint scanner, 3700mAh, from USD549. (Android Central, Gizmo China, GSM Arena)

PC / Tablet

IBM and Red Hat, the world’s leading provider of open source cloud software, have announced that the companies have reached a definitive agreement under which IBM will acquire all of the issued and outstanding common shares of Red Hat for USD190 per share in cash, representing a total enterprise value of approximately USD34B. (CN Beta, TechCrunch, Engadget, CNBC, IBM)

Zhang Hua, VP of Lenovo Group and GM of China’s consumer business, indicates that PC should develop in the direction of its own network. In terms of 5G, Lenovo PC will definitely take the lead in the industry. (My Drivers, Sina, 36Kr)

Automotive

Didi Chuxing is entering the hotel-booking business. R-Lab, the unit in charge of Didi’s new venture, is aptly named to signify the company’s effort to “rebuild” its boundaries beyond on-demand car services. The lab has also been responsible for hatching Didi’s food delivery business. (TechCrunch, Caijing, 36Kr)

Artificial Intelligence

Google has launched an AI for Social Good program that will unify engineering and research efforts dedicated toward noble causes, such as conserving wildlife, finding jobs, predicting floods and anticipating health risks. Google.org has launched the AI Impact Challenge, a contest to support various AI for good projects with up to USD25M in funding.  (Engadget, Google, VentureBeat, Sina)

AnyMind Group, a Singapore-based company that uses AI in online advertising, HR and marketing, has pulled in a strategic USD13.4M investment to go after growth in Japan and other Asian markets. (Business Insider, TechCrunch, Tech In Asia, TechVIVI, Baijiahao)

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