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02-02: Honor’s 5G smartphone would arrive in 2H19; OPPO has announced its continue of European expansion in United Kingdom, Poland and Turkey; etc.

Chipsets

Demand for 8” foundry has kept expanding along with ever-growing niche applications of power management chips, LCD driver ICs, fingerprint recognition chips and MOSFET chips, the sources indicated, adding that the supply of both 8” and 6” foundry capacity will remain strong through 2020 as they can provide the most cost-effective production of niche chips. (Digitimes, press, Digitimes, press)

Touch Display

Pixelworks and HMD Global, the home of Nokia phones, have announced a partnership to bring high-quality display and video performance to future Nokia smartphones. The collaboration will enhance the viewing experience on next generation Nokia smartphones with advanced display processing technologies from Pixelworks. (GizChina, GSM Arena, Globe Newswire, PC Pop)

Camera

Xiaomi reportedly is developing a penta-cam equipped phone. This much was revealed by the company’s product director Wang Teng Thomas who shared a post on Weibo containing a photo with watermarks that indicate that it was “Shot on Mi AI Penta cam”.  (My Drivers, Gizmo China)

Memory

NAND flash prices will continue falling in 2H19, but the pace will be more moderate, according to Wallace Kou, president and CEO of Silicon Motion Technology. The flash memory device controller supplier has reported net sales decreased 11% sequentially to USD123.4M in 4Q18. (China Times, Digitimes, press)

Battery

In the past 2 years, USP PD fast charging has been widely adopted by notebooks. In 2019 shipment of devices equipped with USB-C is expected to reach 2B units. In particular USB-C penetration rate for smartphone and tablets would reach 50%. Chongdiantou has consolidated the main suppliers including Easepower, Joulwat, Powlicon, Renesas, Southchip, Silergy, Silan and Texas Instruments. (CN Beta, EE Focus)

Connectivity

Verizon is unlikely to start expanding its 5G Home fixed wireless broadband service until 2H19. The delay for the expansion is attributed to the lack of standards-based 5G customer premises equipment. Meanwhile, AT&T claimed to launch 5G in 12 cities in Dec 2018, but has offered no details about coverage and performance. AT&T has said it will not have nationwide mobile 5G until early 2020. In the interim it has come under attack for using a “5G E” label for what is really 400Mbps 4G. (PC Mag, Apple Insider, Android Headlines, My Drivers)

Amid of diplomatic crisis between Canada and China due to Huawei Telecom, the Canadian telecom operator is joining hands with Huawei. ABC Communications has partnered with the Huawei to test broadband in the rural areas of western British Columbia. (Gizmo China, Technode, News Wire, Business Insider, RFA)

Phone

With parent company Huawei going full-steam ahead with 5G, sub-brand Honor president George Zhao has announced that the company is working on a 5G smartphone. He has suggested that Honor’s 5G smartphone would arrive in 2H19.  (Android Authority, Sina)

OPPO has announced its continue of European expansion in United Kingdom, Poland and Turkey. OPPO plans to launch its 5G commercial phone in 1H19. Currently, OPPO has already entered more than 40 countries and regions, servicing more than 250M users with their technology products and services. (CN Beta, GSM Arena)

According to Strategy Analytics, global smartphone shipments fell 6% annually to reach 376M units in 4Q18. Global smartphone shipments for the whole year declined 5% in 2018, the smartphone industry’s first ever full-year decline. Samsung maintained first position with 18% global smartphone market share in 4Q18, ahead of Apple iPhone in second, while Huawei was a whisker behind in third place. (Strategy Analytics, press)

ZTE has uplifted the sales ban, making its debut in the US with a USD99 smartphone called Visible R2. Visible is a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO), which runs on Verizon’s 4G LTE network, offering “unlimited” service for USD40 per month, including free mobile hotspot connections.  (Neowin, Visible, Android Police)

In Dec 2017, the Indian government announced an increase in import taxes on mobile phone products from 10% to 15%. In less than 2 months, the Indian government announced that it would increase this tariff from 15% to 20% to protect local manufacturing. The continuous increase in tariffs has not only caused the pace of new product launch of mobile phone vendors to be disrupted, but also the retail price of mobile phones has been continually adjusted. Recently, the Indian government has put forward a new requirement for the major mobile phone vendors in the market: the deadline for the local production of display screens and touch modules was originally scheduled to be completed in 2019-2020, and is suddenly advanced to Feb 2019. If the vendors does not meet this requirement within the specified time, 11% of the import tariff will be imposed. (CN Beta, Economic Times, Mac Rumors, Bloomberg, Economic Times)

Energizer unveils 26 new phones and the company that is building them, Avenir reveals the new product line, Ultimate series: U620S Pop – 6.2” FHD+, MediaTek Helio P70, rear tri 16MP-5MP-2MP + front dual 16MP-2MP pop-up, 6+128GB, side fingerprint scanner, 3200mAh. U630S Pop – 6.3” HD+, MediaTek Helio P22, rear dual 16MP-2MP + front dual 16MP-2MP pop-up, 4+64GB, rear fingerprint scanner, 3500mAh. U650S – 6.5” HD+, MediaTek Helio P22, rear dual 16MP-2MP + front 16MP, 4+128GB, rear fingerprint scanner, 3500mAh. U620S – 6.2” HD+, MediaTek MT6765, rear dual 16MP-2MP + front 16MP, 4+64GB, side fingerprint scanner, 4000mAh. U570S – 5.7” HD+, MediaTek MT6761, rear dual 16MP-2MP + front 16MP, 4+32GB, side fingerprint scanner, 3000mAh. (GSM Arena, Gizmo China)

PCs / Tablets

According to Strategy Analytics, global tablet market shipments contracted 1% in 4Q18 and ended the year 6% lower at 173.8M units. Apple iOS shipments grew 10% year-on-year to 14.5M units in 4Q18, pushing its worldwide market share to 26% of the tablet market. By growing double digits, Apple added 2% points to its market share year-over-year.  (CN Beta, Strategy Analytics, press)

Wearables

Taiwan ODM Compal Electronics is actively proceeding with capacity expansions in China, Taiwan and Vietnam despite global economic prospects clouded by US-China trade tensions, and expects its shipments and revenues for 2019 to grow further from 2018, according to company president CP Wong. Wong expected Compal’s non-PC shipments for 2019 to see double-digit growth from 2018’s 40M units, with shipments of wearable devices, in particular, to grow sharply. (CN Beta, Digitimes, press, Digitimes, press)

Puma has unveiled “self-lacing” shoes, Puma Fi. The Puma FI is the first offering from Puma’s technology platform Fit Intelligence, which is tasked with automating and fine tuning how Puma’s sneakers fit. It has a swipe-activated motor on the boot’s tongue that tightens the shoe’s hidden laces. (Digital Trends, Engadget, CN Beta, Fortune)

According to OPPO CEO Mr. Chen Mingyong, OPPO plans to continue in the mobile smartphone space as their core business, with new smartphones planned for 2019 with the new Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 mobile platform. He has also mentioned that OPPO will be targeting smartwatches and smart headphones soon. (Android Headlines, XDA-Developers, Weibo, CN Beta)

Alphabet’s life sciences arm, Verily, has been looking for partners to co-develop shoes with sensors embedded to monitor the wearer’s movement and weight, as well as to measure falls. (CN Beta, CNBC, The Verge, PC Mag)

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