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04-16: Samsung has announced that its 5nm FinFET process technology is complete in its development; Xiaomi has 50 Mi homes in 10 cities in India, and this number will double in 2019; etc.

Chipsets

ARM invests in ARM server chipset vendor, Ampere. Ampere currently offers its eMAG range of processors since October 2018. The company purchased AppliedMicro’s X-Gene Arm-based server assets back in early 2018, and offers a custom Arm v8.0-A chip design with 32 cores running at 3.3 GHz, built on TSMC’s 16FF+ process. (CN Beta, AnandTech, PR Newswire)

Nine years after it opened with much fanfare, IBM’s manufacturing facility in Tampines will be shut, with the remaining workers to be laid off. The shutting of the IBM Singapore Technology Park comes after several rounds of retrenchments were carried out May~Jul 2018. (CN Beta, TOC, Today Online)

The annual growth of China’s IC design industry output value will likely slow to less than 20% in 2019, for the first time since 2011, according to Digitimes. Statistics show that the annual production value of China’s IC design industry surged nearly 23% on year to a new high of CNY251.5B (USD37.45B) in 2018, extending its leading gap over Taiwan by nearly USD20B. (Digitimes, press, Digitimes)

Samsung has announced that its 5nm FinFET process technology is complete in its development and now is ready for customers’ samples, adding another cutting-edge node to its extreme ultraviolet (EUV)-based process offerings. As for full-on production, the company is expecting starting 2Q20. (CN Beta, CNET, My Drivers, Samsung)

AMD’s 7nm CPU and GPU are expected to be adopted by Sony in its next-generation PlayStation and the processors are estimated to be ready in 3Q20 for the games console’s expected release in 2H20, according to Digitimes. The processors’ packaging and testing will allegedly be handled by Advanced Semiconductor Engineering (ASE) and Siliconware Precision Industries (SPIL). (Digitimes, press, Digitimes, press)

Connectivity

Huawei rotating chairman Ken Hu has revealed that the smart world surrounds 5G, and the development of 5G will be faster than any generation of technologies. Huawei forecasts by 2025 there would be 6.5M 5G base stations worldwide, covering 2.8B users (about 58% of global population). (My Drivers, CN Beta)

Ericsson has received a surprise visit from Chinese regulators who have launched an antitrust investigation against the Swedish vendor. China’s market regulator launched the investigation over alleged complaints against Ericsson’s intellectual property licensing practices. (CN Beta, Telecoms, Global Times)

Phone

Morgan Stanley’s estimate is that health for Apple will top USD15B in sales by 2021, based on the popularity of the Apple Watch and its health features, like monitoring heart rate and steps. The very high end of Morgan Stanley’s estimate range is USD313B by 2027, which is a particularly lofty figure since Apple’s total revenue in 2018 was USD266B. (CN Beta, CNBC, Business Insider, PED30)

Hulu has bought back wireless carrier AT&T’s stake in the U.S. entertainment streaming service for USD1.43B, in a deal that values Hulu at USD15B. The sale of AT&T’s 9.5% stake to Hulu in a cash deal gives Walt Disney, which holds a 60% stake in Hulu via a joint venture, more control of the company. (Phone Arena, Reuters, Sina)

TechInsights estimates the cost of parts included in the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G (SM-G977N) to be USD471.. This represents a USD51 increase over the estimated cost of the Samsung Galaxy S10+ (SM-G975F). (Techinsights, press)

As many as 525M 5G handsets will ship in 2023, up from 37M in 2019, according to a new forecast from IHS Markit. 5G handsets will outpace initial LTE devices by a factor of 6, making it the fastest cellular rollout to date. So far, Huawei, LG, Motorola, Samsung, and Xiaomi are among companies who have announced or shipped 5G handsets. (IHS Markit, press, EE Times)

Huawei director reveals Strategic Research Institute, which focuses on breakthroughs in basic theory and inventions of revolutionary technologies, such as optical computing, NDA storage and atomic manufacturing. In his view, Huawei’s past innovation is the 1.0 model, which is mainly the innovation of products, technologies and solutions. With the establishment of the institute, Huawei is going to innovate 2.0: the breakthrough of research basic theory and invention of basic technology. (CN Beta)

Manu Kumar Jain, VP of Xiaomi Corp and the Managing Director of Xiaomi India, indicates that India’s new e-commerce policy, which began in Feb 2019, did not affect Xiaomi and did not cause any adverse effects. As for the scale of online business, Jain has revealed that 2/3 of Xiaomi’s sales in 2018 came from online sales and 1/3 came from offline sales. Online and offline sales are expected to account for 50% each in 2019. Speaking of offline retail expansion plans, Jain said that Xiaomi has 50 Mi homes in 10 cities in India, and this number will double in 2019. (My Drivers, GizChina, Economic Times)

Samsung Galaxy A2 Core Android Go phone is launched in India – 5” 540×960 qHD, Samsung Exynos 7870, rear 5MP + front 5MP, 1+16GB, Android 9.0 (Go Edition), 2600mAh, INR5,300 (USD76). (GizChina, GSM Arena, Fonearena)

Wearables

Microsoft is reportedly currently working on a pair of earbuds under the code name of Morrison. The company is looking to capitalize upon the development of its audio tech by expanding its portfolio to cover the two major categories of headphones: over-ear and in-ear. (Digital Trends, Thurrott, Sina, CN Beta)

Automotive

Tesla CEO Elon Musk said that drivers could begin removing their hands from the wheel as soon as 6 months from now, but “year 2020” at the latest. It took Tesla years to hit the promised USD35,000 Model 3 milestone, and true hands-off Autopilot tech was initially expected to arrive before 2017. (CN Beta, TechSpot, YouTube)

A joint venture spearheaded by Sony has launched a taxi-hailing service in Tokyo. Minna no Taxi’s S.Ride app is available to use and lets users flag down regular taxis; payment can be handled with cash, credit card, or through a QR code-powered digital wallet. (The Verge, Sony, CN Beta)

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