09-09: Meizu will launch full display smartphone next year; TCL will expand BlackBerry in China, but will not abandon TCL brand; etc.

Chipsets

Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL will likely be powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, instead of a Snapdragon 836. Qualcomm has been forced to delay the upgraded chipset until early 2018. There is also report saying Qualcomm is not working on 836. (GSM Arena, Android Police, WCCFtech, iFeng, CN Beta, Laoyaoba)

STMicroelectronics has said that it will integrate its contactless NFC technology with MediaTek’s silicon, allowing smartphone makers to design handsets supporting mobile services, including payments and other online transactions. (Laoyaoba, Apple Daily, 21IC, CTimes, EE Times, ST)

Morningstar analyst Abhinav Davuluri digging into numerous aspects of “machine learning” and artificial intelligence, and concluding that contrary to popular wisdom, Intel may stand a better chance than NVIDIA in some portions of the chip market for such tasks. (Laoyaoba, Barron’s)

Touch Display

Meizu m series VP Li Nan indicates that full display smartphone will be launched in 2018. (CN Beta, Sohu, Sina)

Louis Vuitton (LV) first smartwatch Tambour Horizon reportedly is using Focal-Tech’s touch IC, showing that Focal-Tech is not only aggressively entering Chinese smartphone vendors supply chain, they are also targeting international market. (Laoyaoba, Focal-Tech, EE World, 51Touch)

Sensory

IBM and MIT announced that IBM plans to make a 10-year, USD240M investment to create the MIT–IBM Watson AI Lab in partnership with MIT. The lab will carry out fundamental artificial intelligence (AI) research and seek to propel scientific breakthroughs that unlock the potential of AI.  (Laoyaoba, Sohu, EET China, Sina, MIT)

Connectivity

Samsung has announced a successful test of 5G data transmission technology using Millimeter Wave spectrum while traveling at speeds reaching in excess of 200kmph, in partnership with Japanese telecom corporation KDDI. (Android Headlines, PC Mag, Fierce Wireless)

STMicroelectronics has created the SPBTLE-1S ready-to-use Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) module that integrates all the components needed to complete the radio subsystem. The new BLE module integrates ST’s proven BlueNRG-1 application-processor System-on-Chip (SoC) and balun, high-frequency oscillators, and a chip antenna among others. (Laoyaoba, EENews, ST)

Intel has announced plans to altogether discontinue their 802.11ad products. The company intends to cease shipments of all of its current-generation WiGig devices by late 2017. The WiGig short range communication standard enables compatible devices to communicate at up to 7–8 Gb/s data rates and with minimal latencies, using the 60 GHz spectrum at distances of up to 10m. But, WiGig cannot penetrate walls.  (CN Beta, Ars Technica, AnandTech)

Intel has announced a 5G mobile trial platform that will be developed alongside 3GPP standards and allow for collaboration from infrastructure and carrier partners. The Intel 5G Mobile Trial Platform will allow for device innovation by supporting initial 5G New Radio (NR) specifications in live tests with partners by the end of 2017, and is powered by Intel’s FGPA  circuits and Core i7 processors. (Android Headlines, ZDNet, Intel, First Post, Leiphone, C114)

Smartphones

Colorado-based phone seller Best Cellular is promoting a new BLU phone called the S1 and it is being boasted as the first from the Miami-based producer to support Sprint’s network. (Android Police, Android Headlines, Pocket Now, Best Cellular, Sprint)

HTC reportedly has entered the final stage of negotiation with Google for selling its smartphone business unit to the Internet service operator. Google is considering options of either becoming a strategic partner or buying out HTC’s smartphone business. (Android Central, Digitimes, press, Bloomberg, Leiphone, China Times, Sohu)

TCL chairman and CEO Li Dongsheng indicates that TCL will increase its push of BlackBerry smartphone in China, hoping the brand will grab a position in the high-end segment in China. However, TCL brand will continue to exist in China, but in what form is still under exploration. (CN Beta, C114, Sina)

TCL chairman and CEO Li Dongsheng reveals that TCL will focus on international management on quality. As Europe is relatively having a bad performance, in 2016 the company has started making some adjustment and it started to show some results. Mr. Li is confident that in 1~2 years the sales will grow. He also reveals that TCL will have another joint venture in Argentina covering Chilli and Peru. (Laoyaoba, EE World)

According to Korea International Trade Association, Apple iPhone accounted for the largest installed base of smartphones in China, with 171M units. Huawei was second with an installed base within China of 132M units, while OPPO’s is 124M, vivo’s 108M, Xiaomi’s 68M and Samsung’s 48M in China.  (Apple Insider, Yonhap News, Gizmo China, Laoyaoba)

According to Bloomberg, shoppers in the world’s biggest mobile market, China, are accustomed to getting the latest technology with their Huawei, OPPO and Xiaomi handsets. That makes it harder for Apple to convince jaded customers that marrying such attributes with its own software is worth the much higher price tag. (Strait Times, Caijing, Bloomberg, press, Laoyaoba)

Full display vivo V7+ is launched in India – 5.99” 1440×720 HD+ display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 processor, rear 16MP + front 24MP cameras, 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, 3225mAh battery, INR21,990. (Android Authority, Gizmo China)

Samsung Galaxy C8 is official in China – 5.5” FHD Super AMOLED display, octa-core processor, rear dual 13MP f/1.7 – 5MP f/1.9 + front 16MP f/1.9 cameras, 3 / 4GB RAM, 32 / 64GB storage, fingerprint scanner, facial recognition, 3000mAh battery. (GSM Arena, Samsung, NDTV, India Today, Huanqiu, iFeng)

Meitu T8s is announced – 5.2” FHD AMOLED display, MediaTek Helio X27 MT6797X processor, front dual 12MP 1.4µm – 5MP 1.4µm cameras, 4GB RAM, 128GB storage, 3580mAh battery, CNY3399. (My Drivers, CNMO, iFeng)

PCs / Tablets

Samsung Galaxy Tab A 8.0 (2017) is unveiled in Vietnam – 8” WXGA 1280×800 TFT display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 425 processor, 8MP + 5MP cameras, 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, Android 7.1, USB Type-C, LTE, 5000mAh battery, VND6,490,000 (USD285). (Android Headlines, NDTV, News4C)

Wearables

The worldwide market for Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) headsets grew 25.5% year over year in 2Q17 as shipments reached 2.1M, according to IDC. Volumes declined slightly from the prior quarter, but recent price cuts on existing products and announced plans for new products are expected to lay the groundwork for a successful holiday season. (Android Headlines, IDC, press, iFeng)

70%~80% of 1,000 early technology-adopting consumers surveyed by L.E.K. Consulting said they are eager to use virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technology to design rooms, try on apparel and take virtual shopping trips as part of the shopping process. Specifically, 80% of those surveyed said they want to use AR or VR to design a room or physical space by browsing virtual or physical showrooms. (VentureBeat, Retail Dive, 199IT, L. E. K. Consulting, executive summary)

Internet of Things

Jaguar-Land Rover has unveiled a concept steering wheel called the Sayer with inclusion of AI, and in a way it is sort of like a computer because it can be removed from the car and taken with the user wherever they go and to a different car. (Ubergizmo, Engadget, Digital Trends, The Verge, Newspress, Sina)

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