01-02: Xiaomi’s new flagship will feature wireless charging; Samsung to sell 320M units smartphones this year; Android Oreo Go INR2000 smartphone to launch this month; etc.


From the upstream supply chain, global branded motherboard market is shrinking, shipment is expected to further drop 10%, mainly because of DIY market, which shrinks more than 15%. In 2013, global branded motherboard market size has reached 75M units, which is peak. But in 2016 it starts to drop less than 50M units, and expects to have shipped about 43M units in 2017. (Tencent, My Drivers, XCN News, IT Home, Digitimes, press)

South Korea’s exports surged 15.8% to reach an all-time high of nearly USD574B in 2017 fueled by an upturn in global demand. Outbound shipments came to USD573.9B for 2017, up from USD495.4B a year earlier, according to data compiled by the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy, and the Korea Customs Service.  (Laoyaoba, Yonhap News, Yonhap CN)

MediaTek has entered Amazon Echo series products with its MT8163 and MT6625 chipsets, and then it has won orders from Alibaba for the smart speakers. MediaTek President Joe Chen believes that smart speaker market will continue to grow because AI will be mature in cloud technologies, and voice interaction will become new platform to replace touch and buttons. (MSN, Laoyaoba, Jiemian, Yahoo)

Touch Display

Samsung has recently filed a patent for a rollable display that can be activated by fingerprint. The patent shows two types of metallic bodies where the rollable display is pulled by the magnets: cylindrical and square. Both feature fingerprint sensors that allow users to unfold the rollable display with a touch of a finger. (Phone Arena, LetsGoDigital)

Shipments of all-screen smartphones are expected to top 910M units in 2018 compared to 130M units shipped in 2017, according to Sigmaintell Consulting. All-screen smartphones will also account for 61% of global smartphone shipments in 2018 and further expand to 85% in 2020, said the marketing consulting firm. (Sigmaintell, press, Digitimes, press)


In 2017, DRAM and capacitance are in shortage and cost up—DRAM costs up more than 20% quarterly, capacitance generally cost up 4~5 times. (EEPW, Baijia, Laoyaoba)

When Samsung Electronics starts mass producing DRAM chips in some lines in the Hwaseong plant and the 2nd floor of the Pyeongtaek plant, the output is expected to increase from the current 370,000 to 600,000 wafers per month in 2019. Many express concerns that semiconductor materials   can face supply shortages when the expansion of the second floor of the Samsung Pyeongtaek Line 1 and SK Hynix’s plants in Cheongju and Wuxi in China are completed and start operation in earnest in 2018 and 2019.  Isopropyl alcohol (IPA), which is widely used to clean parts in a semiconductor manufacturing operation, is also in short supply now because of the expansion of factories and the increase in usage.  (Business Korea, Laoyaoba)

According to IC Insights, strong, ongoing demand put significant upward pressure on DRAM average selling prices.  This trend continued into 4Q17 and is expected to drive quarterly DRAM sales to an all time high mark of USD21.1B. Based on historical trends, the DRAM industry will likely experience a decline (possibly a big market decline) in its growth rate in the not-too-distant future as prices begin to tumble with significant capacity additions and an increase in DRAM output expected over the next 1~2 years.  (IC Insights, press, Laoyaoba)


Samsung releases statement on the battery problem on Galaxy Note 8, Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+. In the official statement, Samsung has said that only few users have encountered the issue and it can only comment on it after more users come across it. (Gizmo China, Winfuture, Daily Mail, Sina, 21CN)

Josh Buettner-Garrett, Solid Power’s chief technology officer indicates that solid-state rechargeable battery technology is finally taking off. BMW Group is partnering with Solid Power in a joint effort to develop Solid Power’s solid-state batteries for electric vehicle applications. Solid state, said analyst Xavier Mosquet, could be 20% cheaper. (CN Beta, Gas2, Inverse, Yahoo, Euro News)

ODM Longcheer has confirmed that the US-based Integrated Device Technology (IDT) will be providing Xiaomi with the wireless charging module for its upcoming flagship phone. IDT has various wireless charging modules that ranges from 3W single direction to 15W dual-direction, but there is no confirmation on the specific model that will be available with the Mi 7. (Android Headlines, The Mobile Indian, Gizmo China, Gizbot, Huanqiu, Sina)


There is a 40% likelihood that Apple will acquire Netflix now that US President Trump’s corporate tax cut has been passed, according to Citi analysts Jim Suva and Asiya Merchant. (Phone Arena, Yahoo, Business Insider, East Day)

Samsung Electronics has recently informed 2018 sales plans to suppliers: 320M smartphones, 40M feature phones, 20M tablets and 5M wearable devices. Samsung has reportedly set a moderate goal largely due to the saturated market.  (CN Beta, Sam Mobile, The Investor)

Google is reportedly partnering with mulitple Indian companies including Micromax, Intex, Lava and Karbonn to bring Android Oreo (Go edition) phones to market. First entry-level smartphone expected to launch later Jan 2018 for the equivalent of just INR2,000 (about USD31). (Android Authority, Factor Daily)

Internet of Things

General Electric (GE) is releasing devices that are compatible with Amazon Alexa and the Google Assistant, including Smart Ceiling Fixture, Smart Wall Switch, and Sol Lamp Extensions. GE is also announcing that is C by GE lineup will get support for Apple Homekit in 1Q18. (Android Headlines)

JVCKENWOOD will show off two new head units that support wireless Android Auto. KENWOOD’s head unit features a 1280×720 LCD display with wide viewing angles. JVC’s option has a large 6.8” display for wireless Android Auto connections. (Android Authority, JVCKENWOOD, Ubergizmo, East Day, Sohu)

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