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08-15: Huawei has already begun research on its 6G network solutions at its labs Ottawa; Realme has officially announced that it will use Samsung’s GW1 64MP sensor; etc.

Chipsets

Toppan Photomasks, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Toppan Printing, will acquire certain assets of GlobalFoundries (GF) Burlington photomask facility. The agreement will also strengthen the Advanced Mask Technology Center (AMTC) joint venture between Toppan Photomasks, Inc. and GF in Dresden, Germany. (CN Beta, GF)

Camera

Taiwan’s Asia Optical is developing a single camera module with periscope lens, based on aspherical glass lens to achieve 6× to 8× optical zoom only in a single camera lens. The optical variable capability of this new camera is stronger than a triple-camera setup. (GizChina, Huawei Central, CN Beta, UDN)

Asia Optical has been developing F2.2 droplet lens modules for use in front cameras of all-screen smartphones with two potential clients and expects shipments to begin in 1Q20 / 2Q20, according to company chairman Robert Lai. Such droplet lenses are under 2mm in diameter to minimize the space taken by notches on the top of smartphone screens, Lai noted. (Digitimes, press, China Times)

Realme has officially announced that it will use Samsung’s GW1 64MP sensor. The company has further stated that it will use the latest sensor to create a new quad-cam phone series. (Gizmo China, IT Home, GizChina)

Battery

Samsung is reportedly on the verge of unveiling a device with a graphene battery “either next year or 2021”. Graphene, as a material, is highly conductive and elastic, touted as the future since its discovery as an alternative to lithium-ion batteries back in 2004. (GSM Arena, Twitter, CNET, Business Insider, Mashable, CN Beta)

Connectivity

According to Ministry of Science and ICT of Korea, Korea’s three major carriers — SK Telecom, KT, and LG Uplus — reached combined subscribers of 2.01M as of 6 Aug 2019, about 2 months after they topped the 1M threshold in Jun 2019. According to the Global System for Mobile Communication Association, Korea accounted for 77% of worldwide 5G subscribers in late Jun 2019. (Gizmo China, TechWeb, Pulse News, Korea Herald)

Huawei has already begun research on its sixth generation (6G) network solutions at its labs Ottawa, Canada. Huawei is working closely with over 13 universities and research institutes on the 6G network and its possible applications. According to a tentative forecast released by Huawei, 6G is not expected to be commercially available before 2030. (GizChina, GSM Arena, My Drivers)

Phone

Realme India CEO Madhav Sheth has revealed that RealmeOS will be coming soon. RealmeOS will reportedly replace ColorOS for Realme phones probably by the end of 2019 or early 2020. (GSM Arena, India Today, IT Home)

Meituan Dianping, a Chinese online food delivery-to-ticketing firm, has started building a mapping service, aiming to enter an area currently dominated by Alibaba’s AutoNavi and Baidu Maps. (CN Beta, Reuters)

Huawei has revealed that it plans to unveil its own mapping service in Oct 2019. Huawei’s mapping service, known as Map Kit, is designed to encourage software developers to come up with applications based on its mapping capabilities. Huawei Map Kit will be connected to local mapping services and covers 150 countries and regions. (GizChina, China Daily, Huanqiu, IT Home)

OnePlus has recently launched its first 5G device in 2019, but Pete Lau, OnePlus’ CEO, said the company’s already planning a second 5G handset for 4Q19. He reckons that for a premium phone in 2020, it has to be equipped with 5G technology. (Pocket-Lint, Financial Times, FT Chinese, Sina)

Apple has published a “WebKit Tracking Prevention Policy” that details web tracking practices it believes are harmful to consumers, as well as technology the group has implemented or intends to implement in its browser engine to block such activity. The Tracking Prevention Policy covers the types of tracking WebKit prevents, alternative tracking countermeasures and how the engine handles unintended consequences of tracking prevention. (CN Beta, WebKit, 9to5Mac, Apple Insider)

Xiaomi is looking to expand its 5G portfolio, which currently only includes the Mi Mix 3 5G. The company has announced that it will unveil its second 5G flagship soon. Xiaomi has received certificates from three certifying authorities in China, effectively confirming the first market to get the phone. (CN Beta, GSM Arena)

Augmented / Virtual Reality

Snap has unveiled Spectacles 3, the latest version of Spectacles sunglasses delivering innovative design with dual HD cameras to empower creativity in 3D. Spectacles 3 are equipped with two HD cameras to capture Snaps in 3D and transform them with 3D Effect. It is priced at USD380. (CN Beta, Engadget, Business Wire, Spectacles, Liliputing)

Nomadic has reported success with its first virtual reality (VR) location-based entertainment center, which is like an arcade for VR. It features Vertigo’s Arizona Sunshine, a VR shooter. And now Nomadic is taking the show on the road to Asia. (VentureBeat, Yahoo)

Home

Global sales of smart speakers continued to soar in 2Q19, reaching 30.3M units, nearly double the same period in 2018, according to Strategy Analytics. With a 21.9% share Amazon remained the leading brand, although its share has fallen from 29.1% in 2Q18. Google retained second place, followed by Baidu, Alibaba and Xiaomi. Apple HomePod sales increased 81% compared to a year earlier, but its share fell slightly and it remained in sixth place. (Strategy Analytics, press)

E-Commerce

Google is doubling down on its e-commerce efforts with the help of JD.com (JD), the Chinese retail giant it invested USD550M, in Jun 2018. In Jul 2019, Google relaunched a shopping homepage to consolidate its e-commerce efforts in the U.S., and now it is speeding up its plan to lure more Chinese sellers. JD.com, while expanding its own offerings on Google, will help recruit Chinese sellers and provide technical support to make it easier for them to sell to U.S. consumers through Google. (CN Beta, Yahoo Finance, SCMP)

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