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09-24: LGD is allegedly considering shutting down its E2 OLED display factory in Paju; vivo has indicated that in 3Q20 5G phones could go down to CNY2,000 price segment; etc.

Chipsets

The Foxconn Group’s development direction in the semiconductor industry will primarily focus on vertical integration, aiming to become a solution provider and devoting its investments mainly to light-asset businesses such as IC design, according to Bob Chen, vice president of the company’s Semiconductor Sub-Group. (Digitimes, press, LTN)

Touch Display

LG Display (LGD) is allegedly considering shutting down its E2 OLED display factory in Paju, Gyeonggi Province in the face of widening losses. LGD rolls out 4.5th generation flexible OLED displays, measuring 730×920 millimeters, at the E2 plant. The OLED displays made at the factory are utilized for smartwatches and smartphones, including Apple Watch. (CN Beta, OLED-Info, Korea Herald)

LG Display (LGD) says that in OLED TV sales in China are expected to reach 300K units in 2019. The company hopes to reach over 1M sales in 2021 and over 2M by 2021. Oh Chang-ho, executive vice president of the TV business division of LGD has indicated that China is entering the OLED era as LGD’s Gen-8.5 OLED plant in Guangzhou has started full-scale operation. (OLED-Info, Business Korea, My Drivers, FPDisplay)

Foxconn’s micro LED R&D team is allegedly dissolved in Aug 2019. Foxconn micro LED R&D team is rumored having problems in the application of technology. After the initial investment in Foxconn, there was no external capital for a long time. Due to financial pressure, the R&D team had to be disbanded. (CN Beta, Sina, Shoujibao)

China’s first Gen-8.5 TFT-LCD glass substrate product is officially launched in Anhui, and China’s independently developed Gen-8.5 TFT-LCD glass substrate products will be industrialized. (CN Beta, Xinhuanet, Sina, Yicai)

Samsung’s dual-screen display patent hints at Galaxy S11e may have a larger secondary display. The phone described in the patent relies on a rear view and a large secondary screen to achieve a high quality portrait selfie (or video call). Different from the main display, the secondary display does not use the design of the curved surface, but a flat piece with a thick border. (CN Beta, Forbes, LetsGoDigital)

Samsung Electronics has revealed that it has sold 5.4M units of QLED TVs since 2017. Citing a report of IHS, Samsung accounted for 31.5% of the global TV market in 2Q19 while taking 53.9% in the segment for 75-inch or larger TVs. Samsung has sold 2.12M QLED TVs in 1H19, and that some 3M units are forecast to be sold in 2H19. (The Investor, Laoyaoba, Sina, Sohu)

Camera

Samsung will launch the Galaxy S11 in 1H20. The big change is the introduction of a 5x optical zoom camera. The 5x zoom module will be produced and supplied by Samsung Electro-Mechanics (SEMCO). SEMCO has begun mass production of related components in May 2019, and the first batch was supplied to OPPO Reno. (My Drivers, CN Beta, iGeekphone)

Memory

Winbond Electronics has announced its new LPDDR4X memory series. Winbond has indicated its new LPDDR4X chips are built using its in-house developed 25nm process technology. The products are available in 2Gb and 4Gb capacities, and will be introduced in 8Gb in the near future. (Digitimes, press, Yahoo, China Times)

China’s DRAM startup ChangXin Memory Technologies (CXMT) will operate as an IDM and start volume production of 8GbDDR4 and LPDDR4 using sub-20nm process by the end of 2019 as scheduled, according to Ping Rxuan, the firm’s vice president and chief of its future technology evaluation labs. (Digitimes, press, Yicai, East Money)

GigaDevice has raised a total of about CNY4.3B, mainly for the company’s DRAM chip independent R&D and industrialization projects and supplementary liquidity. GigaDevice has revealed that the company has received more inquiries from invenstors about Hefei’s 12” wafer memory R&D project. (Laoyaoba, Yicai, JRJ)

Sensory

Georgia Institute of Technology, the University of Kent, and Wichita State University have worked together to develop a portable EEG system that can be attached unobtrusively at the base of the neck. The flexible, wireless sensors come in a patch that is attached to the skin, along with other electrodes held in place by a headband. The EEG data is processed within the flexible patch and then sent wirelessly to a computer via Bluetooth, which can work at distances of up to 15m. (Digital Trends, Eureka Alert, Nature, EDU News)

Facebook has announced that it will acquire neural interface startup CTRL-Labs, a company that makes a wristband capable of transmitting electrical signals from the brain into computer input, with allegedly around USD1B deal. (The Verge, CNBC, Sina)

Battery

Purdue University has developed a new method for designing lithium-ion batteries, which could make them last longer and charge faster. They have used an element called antimony to create a net structure called a “nanochain”. (Digital Trends, Purdue University, ACS, CN Beta)

Connectivity

Chinese telecoms equipment maker Huawei Technologies has revealed that it is not interested in acquiring struggling Oi SA or any other Brazilian carrier. It was rumored that Huawei was joining forces with China Mobile to potentially enter a dispute to buy Oi SA. (CN Beta, My Drivers, Reuters, Reuters)

Phone

Worldwide shipments of smart feature phones running KaiOS are forecast to climb 65% in 2019, with the Africa market being the major growth driver, according to Digitimes Research. In 2019, there will be a total of 10 new smart handsets from players in Africa, Indonesia, Brazil and Ukraine that are pre-installed with KaiOS, and the addition of these new phones is expected to dramatically boost KaiOS-based handset shipments in the year, Digitimes Research noted. (Digitimes, press, Digitimes)

Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun has revealed that 5G phone is just beginning in 2019, the cost is CNY1,000 higher than a 4G phone. This implies that the price of Mi 9 Pro 5G would be at least CNY3,999 as compared to Mi 9, which is priced at CNY2,999. (CN Beta, My Drivers)

vivo has applied for new trademarks belonging to the NEX line in the EUIPO including vivo NEX Pro, vivo NEX Neo, vivo NEX Lite, vivo iQOO Lite, vivoX Pro and vivoX Lite. (GizChina, Gizmo China, Nashville Chatter)

vivo’s executive vice-president Hu Boshan has indicated that in 3Q20 5G phones could go down to CNY2,000 price segment. At the same time, he believes that 5G network will become as mass as 4G now within 3 years. vivo has previously announced collaboration with Samsung, launching 5G dual mode phone by end of 2019 using Samsung Exynos 980. (CN Beta, Sohu, SCMP)

After Huawei opened the world’s first 5G OpenLab in Korea—5G OpenLab costs USD5M in the first phase, Huawei is evaluating the possibility of establishing a research and development center in Korea, and will get results in 1H20. (Laoyaoba, Sohu)

Google has announced that PlayPass will launch on Android devices in the U.S. Google PlayPass will give access to apps and games with USD4.99 a month (after a 10-day free trial). PlayPass will give subscribers unlocked access to 350 apps and games. (GizChina, Google, TechCrunch, 36Kr)

OPPO A11x is announced in China – 6.5” 1600×720 HD+ IPS, Qualcomm Snapdragon 665, rear quad 48MP-8MP ultrawide-2MP depth-2MP macro + front 16MP, 8+128GB, Android 9.0, rear fingerprint scanner, 5000mAh, CNY1,799. (GizChina, IT Home)

Samsung Galaxy A20s is launched in Malaysia – 6.5” 720×1560 HD+ TFT, Qualcomm Snapdragon 450, rear tri 13MP-8MP ultrawide-5MP depth + front 8MP, 3+32 / 4+64GB, Android 9.0, rear fingerprint scanner, 4000mAh 15W, from MYR699 (USD167). (Android Central, Android Headlines, GizChina, 91Mobiles)

Lenovo K10 Plus is launched in India – 6.22” 1080×2340 FHD+ IPS, Qualcomm Snapdragon 632, rear tri 13MP-8MP ultrawide-5MP depth + front 16MP, 4+64GB, Android 9.0, rear fingerprint scanner, 4050mAh 18W, INR10,999 (USD155). (Flipkart, GSM Arena)

Artificial Intelligence

Facebook has acquired Servicefriend, a startup that built bots — chat clients for messaging apps based on artificial intelligence — to help customer service teams. (TechCrunch, The Marker)

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