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08-24: Qualcomm’s upcoming Snapdragon 865 platform will be handed over to Samsung allegedly; The 8” fab utilization rates continue to fall on weak demand for automotive and consumer ICs; etc.

Chipsets

Qualcomm’s upcoming Snapdragon 865 platform will be handed over to Samsung, using the latter’s 7nm EUV process. However, The next platform after Snapdragon 865, which will be Snapdragon 875 will reportedly use the TSMC 5nm process after moving to Samsung EUV. (My Drivers, China Times, The Phone Talks)

The 8” fab utilization rates continue to fall on weak demand for automotive and consumer ICs and are unlikely to rebound until 1H20, according to Digitimes. (Digitimes, press, Digitimes)

Touch Display

Japan Display Inc (JDI) will receive JPY50B (USD470M) of a JPY80B lifeline in Oct 2019 from Suwa Investment Holdings. The consortium consists of Chinese asset manager Harvest Tech Investment Management and Hong Kong-based Oasis Management. Apple has reportedly considered contributing USD100M in support. Apple allegedly will invest UD100M. (CN Beta, Japan Times, Asia Nikkei, IT Home, Tokyo Daily News)

Storage

UNIC2 has developed Xtacking 3D NAND stack technology. It is expected to officially mass-produce 64-layer stack of 3D flash memory by the end of 2019. It will gradually increase production capacity by 2020. It is expected that capacity will be increased to monthly production by the end of 2020 with 60,000 wafers. By 2020, UNIC2 will also launch a 128-layer stack of 3D flash memory. (CN Beta, My Drivers)

Materials

Under the banner of “environmental protection” centered on cutting waste water discharge and improving air quality, China’s PCB industry has been seeing “supply-side reforms” since late 2017. Authorities have indirectly forced many PCB “shops” out of business via suspension orders. As the policy continues to be tightened and enforced strictly, environmental bills (either fine or additional expenditure in environmental equipment) are eating up profits of the remaining small PCB companies who could gradually exit the market. (Macquarie Research report)

PCB is commonly perceived as a commodity-like sector. However, Macquarie Research believes with positives in both supply and demand, the 5G cycle presents more growth and less cyclical features in the next 2-3 years for select China PCB companies. SYTECH, the world’s 2nd largest laminate company in capacity, is closing the technology gap with industry leaders and is part of Huawei’s plan B. SCC earns 60% of its revenues from telecom and is the #1 PCB supplier for Huawei. (Macquarie Research report)

Connectivity

In 2020, worldwide 5G wireless network infrastructure revenue will reach USD4.2B, an 89% increase from 2019 revenue of USD2.2B, according to Gartner. Additionally, Gartner forecasts that investments in 5G NR network infrastructure will account for 6% of the total wireless infrastructure revenue of communications service providers (CSPs) in 2019, and that this figure will reach 12% in 2020. (Gartner, press, 199IT)

Home

According to Analysys analysis, Alibaba AliGenie is China’s highest-selling smart speaker in the market in 2019, while Baidu’s Xiao Du smart speaker has the strongest marketing strategy. Xiaomi’s Xiao Ai speaker is a single brand IoT category complete product. (Analysys report)

Analysys expects that the number of smart speakers in the US in the last 2 years is 130M, and the data for the same period in China is expected to be 80M. The gap between China and the United States is rapidly disappearing. However, in terms of consumer penetration, subject to the population of China, China’s current market penetration rate is only 6.9%, while the United States is 26.2%. According to the theory of innovation diffusion, the US market has now crossed the gap and entered the “early public” stage, while China is still in the “early adopter” stage. (Analysys report)

Automotive

Toyota – the official vehicle fleet operator for Tokyo 2020 – has revealed the fleet of electric, hybrid, plug-in hybrid and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles set to be used at the Olympic Games in 2020. Around 3,700 ‘mobility products’ will be in operation at the Games, 90% of which are expected to be electrified in some capacity. (CN Beta, The Verge, Driving Electric, CNET)

Payment

Xiaomi’s a payment app called Mi Pay that launched in Mar 2019. Xiaomi’s new Mi Credit service in India, offering loans of up to INR100,000 (USD1,451) is scheduled to debut soon. Mi Credit is currently operating in “beta phase”. (CN Beta, Live Mint)

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