04-21: Qualcomm allegedly is launching Snapdragon 735; Honor has revealed that the company will launch its 5G phones in 2019; etc.


Qualcomm allegedly is launching Snapdragon 735, built on a 7nm process, featuring an octa-core CPU in a novel 1+1+6 core configuration – a middle ground between the 855’s 2+2+4 and the 2+6 of the 730. Clock speeds are expected to be 1×2.9GHz + 1×2.4GHz + 6×1.8GHz. (CN Beta, Gizmo China, GSM Arena, Suggest Phone)

Touch Display

AU Optronics (AUO) is enforcing a 3-axis strategy to tackle challenges and seize business opportunities coming along with the emerging technologies such as 8K displays, foldable smartphones, autonomous driving, AI and IoT in 2019, according to company president and COO Michael Tsai. (Digitimes, press, UDN)

As Samsung adopts Pi-OLED panels to more flagship models like Galaxy S series and Galaxy Note series, Huawei, OPPO, vivo and Xiaomi may also have applied Pi-OLED panels to their new models and further expand the Pi-OLED market. With that, Isaiah Research expects 3D cover glass shipments to reach 70M~80M units in 2019. (Isaiah Research report)

According to Isaiah Research, Samsung is cooperating with KH VATEC to design and supply Galaxy Fold’s hinge. As for Huawei Mate X, AVC may be the major hinge supplier. AVC may have started designing the new hinge for Samsung’s 2nd foldable smartphone, which is expected to be the outward or vertically folding version. (Isaiah Research report)

According to Isaiah Research, TDDI supply in 2019 is about 700M~800M units, meeting demand of 500M~600M units. Thus, TDDI shortage could relieve after 1H19. (Isaiah Research report)

Google Photos is one of the first apps developed by Google that is getting support for foldable smartphones. The improvements for those owning a foldable smartphone include screen continuity and multi-resume. (Phone Arena, 9to5Google, IT Home)

LG Display (LGD) currently produces flexible OLEDs (pOLEDs), is the exclusive supplier of AMOLED displays for Apple Watch (although this could change soon) and it also supplies OLED displays for various smartphones, including the company’s own flagship phones. Due to low yields, poor display quality and securing orders, LGD allegedly may decide to shut down its pOLED smartphone business, and focus on automotive OLED displays. (OLED-Info, Business Korea)


LG Electronics has filed a design patent with the Hague International Design System. It features a basic sketch of a device that features three selfie cameras, and three rear cameras. (GizChina, Tiger Mobiles, Sina)

Sealand Securities’ analysis of the industrial chain, whether structural light or TOF solution, domestic enterprises are expected to take the lead in areas that have already had a good foundation, such as filters and modules. In other areas, relying on the overall downstream shipments, therefore, whether the domestic supply chain can participate depends mainly on the layout intention and progress of the main brands of the Android camp in the 3D structured light field. (Sealand Securities report)

CITIC Securities has consolidated data of 2018 camera modules vendors ranking based on their shipments. O-Film still maintains the champion, Sunny Optical ranks second, followed by LG Innotek, and SEMCO. (CITIC Securities report)


NAND flash prices are expected to fall less than 10% sequentially in 2Q19, and will likely stop falling later in 2019, according to Digitimes. Having fallen since 2018, NAND flash prices dropped further in 1Q19. Samsung Electronics started cutting its NAND flash quotes in 1Q19 aiming to clear out inventory, sending other NAND flash chipmakers following suit. (Digitimes, press)


Driven by sales boom for voice-controlled and smart speakers, Bluetooth headphones have seen growing popularity, prompting web giants and consumer electronics vendors to jump on the bandwagon, which is in turn providing strong growth momentum for upstream suppliers of VCSEL components in 2019, according to Digitimes. (Digitimes, press, Digitimes, press)


Based on 5.5M devices and 20B measurements, over a period of 4 months (Dec 2018~Mar 2019), according to OpenSignal, Jio now has an impressive 97.5% 4G coverage on the Indian Sub-continent. Even in advanced Nations like the USA and Taiwan, no single operator has crossed 95% coverage. The Netherlands which is a leader in the 4G market has only one operator that has crossed the 95% mark. (GizChina, OpenSignal)

According to HSBC, the spectrum band is likely to increase from 50-60 in 4G phone to 90-100 in 5G. This will create incremental demand for RF components such as antenna, switches, filters, and amplifiers. Millimeter wave RF component creates technical challenges for the supply chain. Qorvo expects the number of antennas in each smartphone will increase from 2-4 in 2018 to 7-8 in 2020-21 and projects the overall RF component addressable market will grow from USD14B in 2018 to USD21B in 2022. (HSBC report)

China’s leaders have said they want the country to lead the world in 5G. This suggests a huge amount of money is about to be invested. HSBC believes China’s 5G capex cycle will start in 2020, and HSBC expects 2018 to be the trough for domestic telco capex, forecasting 34% growth for the full year 2020, with investment rising to CNY403B (USD60B). (HSBC report)

Judging from the number of patents in the 5G standard, according to the statistics of ETSI and ICT, the companies claimed to have more than 1,000 patents include Huawei, Nokia, LG, Ericsson, Samsung, Qualcomm and ZTE. Huawei is ranked first with 1,970 5G patents, accounting for 17%. Nokia ranked second with 1,471 5G patents, accounting for 13%, and LG ranked third with 1,448 5G patents, and accounting for 12%. (TF Securities report)


Huawei has announced its 92 core supplier lists in 2018. The number of US suppliers is the highest, 33 of them including Intel, NXP, Qualcomm and Broadcom, accounting for 35%, and the number of suppliers in the Mainland China ranked the second, which is 25 of them including Luxshare, BYD, BOE, AAC and SF Express. (Industrial Securities report)

Zhao Ming, president of Honor, has revealed that the company will launch its 5G phones in 2019. He has also revealed that 2019 Honor will have different sizes and series of notebooks to market, “we will certainly become one of the most powerful core strengths of the notebook industry in China in the future”. (My Drivers, Sina)

Augmented / Virtual Reality

MyndVR is now rolling out MyndVR 2.0 in partnership with HTC’s Vive X accelerator. MyandVR is a VR platform designed for use by elderly people, giving them a raft of content to enjoy. The platform is already up and running in 20 states across the US as well as Canada. (Upload VR, MyndVR, RobotSky)


According to Voicify, the percent of U.S. adults that own smart speakers rose 40.3% in 2018 climbing from 47.3M to 66.4M during 2019. This increase means more than one-in-four U.S. adults now have access to a smart speaker based voice assistant. (Voicify report)

According to Voicify, Amazon continued to have the leading installed base of smart speakers in 2018 despite its market share shrinking from about 72% to 61%. Google was a big mover shifting from 18.4% to nearly 24%, accounting for precisely half of Amazon’s market share decline. (Voicify report)


HTC has teamed up with Proof of Capital, a blockchain venture capital fund, aiming to deepen the development and expand the global ecosystem of the cryptographic technology. HTC’s partnership with Proof of Capital will focus on defining the standards and interaction models under the framework of Internet 3.0. (Digitimes, press, China Times, LTN)

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