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2-3: MediaTek has announced Helio G80 SoC; BOE Technology will reportedly ship 45M units OLED panels for Apple’s iPhone in 2021; etc.

Chipsets

Intel CEO Bob Swan has indicated that ramping 10nm is comprised of multiple components. One, improve yields. Quarter by quarter for the last 5 quarters, yields are getting better than they have anticipated at the time. This is very important—both for the client and for the server. He has also indicated that the company feels very good about how they are ramping 10nm during the course of 2020. (CN Beta, My Drivers, Barron’s)

Kneron, a developer of AI algorithms and AI-optimized processor designs for use in edge devices such as surveillance cameras and other smart home products, raised an additional USD40M to further develop its products. Kneron unveiled its first chip, the KL520 in May 2019. The chip enables efficient processing of AI algorithms using power measured in the “few hundred” milliwatt range. Kneron is expected to release its second AI chipset KL720 in 2Q20. (Laoyaoba, Biometric Update, Sohu)

Intel has revealed that it is ending work on its Nervana neural network processors in favor of the artificial intelligence (AI) chips it has gained with the chipmaker’s recent USD2B acquisition of Habana Labs. Intel has been developing the Nervana chips since it acquired Nervana Systems, for a reported USD408M in 2016. (My Drivers, Tom’s Hardware, Forbes, CRN)

MediaTek has announced Helio G80 SoC, which is built on a 12nm process and features octa-cores. G80 uses a 2 + 6 “Big.Little” design. The big core is two Cortex A75s with a frequency of 2GHz, and the small core is six A55s with a frequency of 1.8GHz. GPU matches Mali-G52 MC2, frequency is 950MHz. (CN Beta, My Drivers, XDA-Developers, Pocket Now)

India’s finance ministry Nirmala Sitharaman has revealed that the country plans to invest INR8,000 crores (USD1.12B) in quantum computing research over 5 years. The scheme will boost the research for technology under the National Mission of Quantum Technology and Application project. (CN Beta, Deccan Herald, NDTV)

Touch Display

LG Electronics has filed four trademark patents with the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), showing that the company is improving display materials. The 4 trademarks are MOLED, PELED, MicLED and i-LED, which may be the latest derivative versions of the existing LED and OLED screen materials. (CN Beta, LetsGoDigital)

LG Display (LGD), the world’s top maker of liquid crystal displays, will stop making them for televisions in its home market of South Korea within 2020, the company has revealed after announcing its biggest full-year operating loss ever. (CN Beta, Asia Nikkei, Channel News)

BOE Technology will reportedly ship 45M units OLED panels for Apple’s iPhone in 2021, and LG Display (LGD) will supply 26M units OLED panels. Samsung Display will still retain the majority iPhone orders, but the order has dropped from 230M in 2019 to 150M units. (CN Beta, My Drivers)

Memory

SK hynix and Wuxi High-tech Zone have signed an investment cooperation agreement with a total investment of CNY2B to build an integrated circuit industrial park. It will give full play to market effects, focusing on SK hynix’s upstream and downstream industrial chains, gathering semiconductor industry clusters, and supporting construction of the facility. (CN Beta, Sina)

JEDEC has published its UFS 3.1 specification (JESD220E), which adds several performance, power, cost-cutting, and reliability-related features to the standard. The new capabilities promise to increase real-world device performance, minimize power usage, potentially cut costs of high-capacity storage devices, and improve the user experience. (Laoyaoba, JEDEC, AnandTech)

Camera

Samsung Galaxy S20 series reportedly feature a new camera feature called “Quick Take”. This will allow users to capture 3 individual photos at the same time from the main, ultra-wide, and telephoto cameras. User will then be able to go into the image gallery and select which photo to keep. (GSM Arena, Android Authority, Phone Arena)

Battery

Toyota Motor and Panasonic have agreed to set up a joint venture specializing in prismatic electric vehicle batteries. The new company will develop batteries that will be available to any automaker, not limited to Toyota vehicles. (Laoyaoba, Reuters, Financial Express)

Chinese battery maker Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL) has confirmed its partnership with Tesla in China. Tesla will determine the battery purchase volume between Jul 2020 to Jun 2022, according to its own needs. (Laoyaoba, WSJ, Benzinga, CNA, Reuters)

Connectivity

MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) claims they manage to bolster connectivity with what they call RFocus, a software-controlled external “smart surface” that uses an array of more than 3,000 wireless antennas. Preliminary tests show that it is able to boost average signal strength by a factor of nearly ten and channel capacity by a factor of two. (CN Beta, Engadget, VentureBeat)

Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology is reportedly already doing some work on 6G and has laid out a blueprint about what could be possible several years in the future. Reportedly, the 6G download data speeds could hit 1TBps, which is equivalent to 1,000GB/sec or 8,000Gbps. That is 8,000 times the data speed that can be achieved with 5G. (Phone Arena, GSM Arena, GizChina, Sina)

Phone

TF Securities takes a conservative look at the 1H20 phone industry and believes that mobile phone brands and the industry chain are facing 3 potential risks, namely: (1) China’s phone shipments will be lower than market expectations, and (2) 5G mobile phones will replace Android demand contribution is less than expected, (3) iPhone supply is affected by the Coronavirus outbreak in 1Q20 and shipments are lower than expected. The 3 potential risks, Risk 1 and Risk 2 are demand issues, and the outbreak of Coronavirus is only accelerating these 2 emergence. Risk 3 is more like a supply-side issue. (TF Securities, press, Apple Insider)

According to Apple CEO Tim Cook, the company now has 1.5B active devices. The active install base has grown from 1.4B, a number that Apple reported in Jan 2019. (199IT, 9to5Mac, Mac Rumors)

Wistron reportedly plans to assemble printed circuit boards (PCBs) for Apple iPhone at its new plant in southern India, highlighting Apple’s push to expand manufacturing in the world’s second-biggest smartphone market. The plan is part of Wistron’s INR30B (USD422.12M) investment proposal submitted to the Karnataka state government in 2018. (My Drivers, CN Beta, Reuters)

Automotive

Toyota Motor has revealed that it sold 10.74M vehicles around the world in 2019, trailing Volkswagen AG’s record annual sales of 10.97M vehicles. In 2018, Volkswagen sold 10.83M vehicles, edging out Toyota for the No. 1 crown. (My Drivers, Japan Today, Dallas News, AP News)

Ola, one of the world’s largest ride-hailing platforms, has announced it will launch in London. The platform will be fully operational from day one, with over 20,000 drivers having registered on the platform. (TechCrunch, Quartz, Live Mint, Ola)

Tesla Model 3 is the world’s best selling all-electric car (and plug-in car in general) with 300,885 units globally in 2019 (448,704 cumulative by the end of 2019). (CN Beta, Quartz, Inside EVs)

Artificial Intelligence

Before a new medicine enters human trials, there is typically 3-5 years of work behind the scenes, researching causes for diseases and compounds that may help treat them. But working with British AI startup Exscientia, a Japanese drug development company called Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma is about to start phase 1 clinical trials after only 12 months. The drug in question is DSP-1181, a prospective treatment for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). (CN Beta, Pharmaphorum, Vox, Exscientia, Techspot)

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