03-16: Overall production of LTPS panel has increased, and it might cause pressure on pricing from 2Q17; In 1H17, price of a-Si panel is dropping; etc.

Chipsets

Dr. Chris Eliasmith, a theoretical neuroscientist and co-CEO of Canadian AI startup Applied Brain Research, is confident that a new type of chip is betting on the proliferation of ‘neuromorphics’ — a type of computer chip that is not yet widely known but already being developed by several major chip makers. Neuromorphics communicate in parallel (and without the rigidity of clocked time) using “spikes” – bursts of electric current that can be sent whenever needed. (Wired, Laoyaoba, Tencent)

wired-neuromorphics

Semiconductor Manufacturing International (SMIC) is looking to start R&D for 7nm process technology later in 2017, according to company CEO and executive director Tzu-Yin Chiu.

SMIC has in recent years put increased focus on advance-node technologies with annual R&D expenses accounting for as high as 12%-13% of revenues. (Digitimes, press, Kejixun)

MediaTek plans to roll out a new mobile SoC solution built by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) using the foundry’s 12nm process technology in 2H17, according to Digitimes. The TSMC 12nm process is actually a smaller version of the foundry’s 16nm technology. (Digitimes, press)

Touch Display

Mobile phone vendors demand for LTPS panels is stable. 2016 a-Si panel price raking up and in 2017 price is coming down; AMOLED is in tight-supply. Now, it seems LTPS demand has increased, yet overall production has increased, and it might cause pressure on pricing from 2Q17. (Digitimes, press, Laoyaoba)

digitimes-ltps-panel-2017

U-Best Polymer Industry has gained ITRI’s technology transfer of flexible OLED material recipe. The general manager Liu Zhiguang is optimistic it can be used on flexible OLED phone in next 2 years. (Laoyaoba, Yahoo, UDN, China Times)

BOE showcasing a 7.8” flexible display, built with LTPS AMOLED technology, reaching 90% above colour gamut, and only 0.24mm thick, with 5mm bendable radius. (Laoyaoba, PC OnlineIT168)

boe-flexible-ltps-oled-display

Mobile phone panels inventory is high, and pull-in is weak in China, causing the price drop, especially for a-Si panel. In early 2017, price of a-Si panel is dropping, in 1Q17 the drop rate is 15%, and in 2Q17 it would be continue with double-digit drop rate. HannStar and CPT have enjoyed big profit in 4Q16, but because of the price drop, in 1Q17 the profit is small, and in 2Q17 they might be facing lose. (China Times, Laoyaoba)

According to Digitimes, Huawei reportedly will have only 8% of its total production of smartphones featuring AMOLED panels in 2017 due to an insufficient supply. About 70% of global output of OLED panels in 2017-2018, mainly from Samsung Display, will be consumed by Samsung and Apple, therefore limiting the supply of OLED panels to other vendors. Apple is expected to receive delivery of 75M OLED panels from Samsung Display in 2017. (91.com, CN Beta, Digitimes, press)

Memory

Bankers, politicians and corporations are scrambling to assemble an “all Japan” consortium to buy Toshiba’s NAND Flash memory business. Japanese business leaders and government officials have expressed concerns about Toshiba’s technology falling into foreign hands. (Laoyaoba, CN Beta, Financial Times)

financialtimes-toshiba-stock

Battery

Engineering professor at the University of Texas, Austin, John Goodenough’s team has created an all-solid-state battery that does not rely on chemical liquids to work. New tech ‘promising’ for longer battery life, Alphabet CEO Eric Schmidt says. (Android Headlines, Bloomberg, CNET, UT News, 163)

eric-schmidt-new-battery

Smartphones

“As long as there is demand, whether the clients are American or Chinese, Pegatron already has its production lines in place,” Pegatron CEO Liao Syh-jang said. “If Trump institutes his Made in America proposal, it will be fine for Pegatron as long the client is willing to absorb the costs.” (Laoyaoba, 163, Apple Insider, Focus Taiwan)

Samsung Electronics will present a plan to transit itself into a holding company around in May 2017, in spite of the detention and trial of vice chairman Lee Jae-yong. Such a move is interpreted as an intension to fill in the leadership vacuum as quickly as possible, which has been left due to the absence of the control towers of the group’s de facto head and the Future Strategy Office.  (Laoyaoba, Sina, Business Korea)

HMD Global has purchased the license to launch Nokia-branded phones for the next 10 years. The Alcatel brand was licensed by Alcatel-Lucent to TCL for mobile phones and devices till end of 2024. When Nokia acquired the assets of Alcatel-Lucent in 2016, this also included licensing agreements for the Alcatel brand. (Softpedia, CN Beta)

OPPO and vivo might soon make it to the Russian phone market. The brands will sell their devices in Russia in partnership with local carrier MTS. (Sina, GizChina)

Wearables

Canalys forecasts the smartwatch market will grow 18% in 2017, with 28.5M units being shipped. This will mean the total value of smartwatch shipments in 2017 will reach USD10B. As the average selling price of smartwatches climbs, the value of the smartwatch market will reach about 2/3 that of the predicted value of the traditional Swiss watch market in 2017. (Android Headlines, Canalys, press, CN Beta)

canalys-20121-smartwatch-forecast

Internet of Things

Tesla expects to raise about USD1.15B from a stock and senior notes offering, an infusion of needed capital as the electric car maker enters pre-production of its upcoming Model 3 electric sedan. (VentureBeat, CN Beta)

iRobot, the company behind Roomba, has announced that its robotic vacuum cleaner Roomba 900 Series is equipped with Amaxon Alexa voice-activated assistant. (LaoyaobaFox News, PC Mag)

irobot-roomba-amazon-alexa

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