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05-24: TSMC has indicated that its shipments to Huawei Technologies are not affected; Huawei allegedly has been removed from the list of consortium members of SD card; etc.

Chipsets

TSMC has indicated that its shipments to Huawei Technologies are not affected by U.S. action aimed at curbing the telecom equipment maker’s access to American technology. (GizChina, Reuters, CN Beta)

TSMC is set to kick off commercial production of chips built using N7+ technology, the foundry’s first process node with EUV lithography, in 3Q19, according to the pure-play foundry. TSMC forecast that its total managed capacity will amount to 12M 12” equivalent wafers in 2019, with capacity for 7nm process technology to jump 150% on year to 1M units. (Digitimes, press, UDN, Epochtimes)

Touch Display

Apple is allegedly considering the possibility of adding flexible OLED displays to its MacBook Pro and iPad Pro lines, a component that could be supplied by Samsung using a slightly modified production technique for the display technology. (CN Beta, Apple Insider, The Elec)

Samsung is granted a patent relating to an alternative folding smartphone based on a ‘Fold-Out’ smartphone design. The patent says the fold-out phone will have a flexible display spread across two cases which are joined by a hinge with a sliding mechanism. (CN Beta, BGR, Patently Apple)

China-based flat panel makers appear to have outraced their rivals in Korea, Taiwan and Japan, judging from the sales performances of individual players in 1Q19. Based on available information, at least 4 Chinese panel makers – BOE Technology, China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSOT), Tianma Microelectronics and Visionox – posted on-year revenue growth in 1Q19 due mostly to capacity ramps. (Digitimes, press, Digitimes)

Camera

Himax has disclosed that along with subsidiary Emza Visual Sense, the company has developed its second-generation WiseEye vision solution designed for notebooks. The WiseEye 2.0 solution is built on Emza’s AI-based machine learning computer vision algorithms and Himax’s proprietary processor as well as its ultra-low power CMOS image sensor, Himax said. (Laoyaoba, UDN, Digitimes, press)

Memory

Huawei allegedly has been removed from the list of consortium members. This would make it impossible to produce and sell devices with SD support. (GizChina, SD Card, HK01, Seehua)

Toshiba is confirming whether some products do not meet its requirements according to the Entity List, but has not stopped cooperation with Huawei. Toshiba has been strictly complying with the laws and regulations of its countries and regions to carry out various businesses. In the future, Toshiba will continue to be technology-oriented and contribute to the sustainable development of Chinese society. (My Drivers, Asia Nikkei, Xinhuanet)

Huawei is reportedly looking to step up purchases of memory chips from its Japan- and South Korea-based suppliers, including Toshiba Memory and SK Hynix, according to Digitimes. (Digitimes, Elecfans, Sohu)

Battery

Microsoft has announced a new wind energy agreement in the Netherlands. Microsoft will purchase 90MW from the massive 731.5MW offshore wind project, Borssele III/IV, from Dutch sustainable energy company and wind farm developer Eneco. Eneco will provide Microsoft’s datacenters with green power for 15 years starting in 2022. (Neowin, Microsoft)

Connectivity

According to InterDigital, although the United States tried to ban the sale of chips and software to Huawei, it could license its 5G network technology to Huawei. In addition, some US patent attorneys said that Qualcomm may also be able to do so. InterDigital and Qualcomm are the two patent holders of wireless network technology in the United States. (GizChina, Reuters, IT Home)

Phone

According to Strategy Analytics, assuming the ban continues, they expect Huawei’s global smartphone shipments to decline by 24% year-on-year in 2019. By 2020, shipments will continue to decline by 23% year-on-year. It justifies this estimation by saying the Trump administration’s actions make it difficult for Huawei to utilize US hardware and software, especially Google Play. However, this does not have much impact on the Chinese market. (GizChina, Strategy Analytics, CN Beta)

Huawei’s consumer business CEO Richard Yu has confirmed that Huawei is developing its own operating system, which will be available in the 2019 fall and 2020 spring at the earliest. Huawei has trademarked “Huawei Hongmeng” name from China’s Trademark Office of national intellectual property administration. (CN Beta, Gizmo China, Huawei Central)

Pegatron reportedly will start assembling Apple’s MacBook and iPad devices via PT Sat Nusapersada, a local manufacturer in Batam, Indonesia in Jun 2019. Pegatron has reportedly invested USD300M to refurbish two plants in Indonesia. Pegatron originally planned to establish plants in Vietnam, but came to Batam instead due to consideration of labor sufficiency. (9to5Mac, Gizmo China, Digitimes, press, Sohu)

The CEO of Lenovo Group Yang Yuanqing has indicated that the company is not planning to develop its own operating system (OS) and chips despite rising fears that a slew of other Chinese technology companies could find themselves facing the same fate as Huawei by having their access to US technology cut off. (My Drivers, Yahoo, China Knowledge)

Redmi 7A is announced – 5.45” 720×1440 HD+, Qualcomm Snapdragon 439, rear 13MP + front 5MP, 2+16 / 3+32GB, Android 9.0, P2i, no fingerprint scanner, face unlock, 4000mAh. (GizChina, GSM Arena, Weibo)

Wearables

Amazon is working on a voice-activated wrist-worn wearable with a special feature, codenamed Dylan; it will be able to read human emotions. The device will work with a smartphone app and is equipped with microphones. The sound of the user’s voice will go through software to determine what kind of emotional state the user is in. (Phone Arena, Bloomberg, Pocket-Lint, Wallstreet CN, Sina)

Artificial Intelligence

MIT is investigating an approach that leverages GPS-like maps and visual data to enable autonomous cars to learn human steering patterns, and to apply the learned knowledge to complex planned routes in previously unseen environments. (MIT, VentureBeat)

AI and machine learning helped cut down on abusive posts a great deal, according to Facebook. In 6 of the 9 areas tracked in the “Community Standards Enforcement Report”, the company says it proactively detected 96.8% of the content it took action on before a human spotted it (compared with 96.2% in 4Q18). For hate speech, it says it now identifies 65% of the more than 4M hate speech posts removed from Facebook each quarter, up from 24% just over a year ago and 59% in 4Q18. Concretely, Facebook disabled 1.2B accounts in 4Q18 and 2.19B in 1Q19. (VentureBeat, Facebook, Wallstreet CN)

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