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11-10: Defects have been found in Samsung’s foundry products; MediaTek is launching its first 5G SoC chip, codenamed MT6885Z; etc.

Chipsets

Defects have been found in Samsung’s foundry products. Earlier 2019, the company had found problems in its first-generation 10nm (1xnm) DRAM products. This time, defects were discovered in its foundry products, undermining Samsung’s reliability. The defects are caused by the use of contaminated equipment on an 8” wafer line located in Samsung’s Giheung Plant in Korea. (Laoyaoba, Business Korea, TechNews)

MediaTek and TSMC have announced that the industry’s first 8K digital TV system-on-chip (SoC) manufactured with 12nm technology, the MediaTek S900, has entered volume manufacturing with TSMC. Built on TSMC’s low-power 12nm FinFET Compact (12FFC) process following the companies’ close collaboration, the S900 enables the next generation of smart TVs to deliver a richer and more interactive experience to consumers. (My Drivers, Gizmo China, TSMC)

MediaTek is launching its first 5G SoC chip, codenamed MT6885Z. Built on TSMC’s 7-nanometer process, both the CPU and GPU use the latest and greatest ARM public version architecture, the Cortex A77+Mali-G77 GPU. It also integrates a third-generation AI engine, a processor that supports Sub 6GHz 5G band (NSA+SA), an 80MP camera, and 4K 60-frame video capture. MediaTek also has a mid-range SoC with integrated M70 5G baseband, MT6873. (CN Beta, Mighty Gadget, GSM Arena, Twitter)

Touch Display

AU Optronics (AUO) and Innolux both have expanded beyond their core display business into the medical equipment and healthcare sectors as they seek to explore sustainable business opportunities. (Digitimes, press, China Times)

Chinese panel makers have been aggressively entering the global big-screen TV market and actively seizing the market share. South Korean panel makers such as Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics have been affected. TCL has launched a new 4K smart TV 100X6C with 100” and a CNY79,999 price tag. It is the cheapest TV product with a market size of 90” or more. Hisense has also recently released 7 series of 85” ULED large-size smart TVs, with a 4K model retail price of USD4,299. ULED is a panel technology developed by Hisense. By overlapping two LCD liquid crystal displays, the color performance and contrast of the screen are improved, and the price is lower than that of OLED. (Laoyaoba, Money DJ, Sina)

Samsung Galaxy S11 that to be launched in 1Q20 is reportedly to be feature 120Hz high refresh rate display. (CN Beta, BGR)

Hon Hai Group investing subsidy Sharp has announced that it has teamed up with the Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK) to develop a “rollable” 30” 4K OLED panel. This product uses a 30” flexible film substrate, RGB panel that uses RGB illumination and does not require color filters. (Laoyaoba, Money DJ)

Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) has developed a new light-emitting material which combines quantum dot with a polymer medium filled with popcorn-like air bag. The new material, compared to conventional pure quantum dot films, perform 21 times better luminous intensity and 45% better durability. They expect to apply the material to Micro LED display to enhance production efficiency. (Laoyaoba, TechNews, ACS, LEDInside, LEDInside)

Camera

Samsung has filed a trademark “Space Zoom” with the EUIPO (European Union Intellectual Property Office). The description of this patent clearly says “software to zoom in to a subject without lowering image quality”. (Android Headlines, LetsGoDigital, CN Beta)

Sony is launching new CMOS image sensor IMX686, which may feature 60MP-64MP. It squeezes 4 tiny pixels under one Bayer filter color pixel and combines the information collected by four adjoining pixels, thus resulting in better details, and lesser noise. (CN Beta, GSM Arena, IT Home)

Huawei has filed 2 trademarks, Cine-Lens and Camera Matrix with EUIPO (European Union Intellectual Property Office). In particular, Cine-Lens are for Mate 30 Pro, and Camera Matrix may be for Honor V30 series. (Laoyaoba, GSM Arena, CN Beta)

Memory

Industrial Securities has consolidated the transition plan of 2D NAND to 3D NAND for various vendors including Samsung, Toshiba, SK Hynix, Micron and Yangtze Memory Technology Corp (YMTC). (Industrial Securities report)

Industrial Securities has consolidated the global NAND storage manufacturer’s production capacity, showing that the production capacity has a quarterly growth in 2019. (Industrial Securities report)

Biometrics

Samsung Electronics is reportedly mulling using ToF-based 3D sensing technology for facial recognition for its upcoming Galaxy Note 11 slated for 2H20, instead of in-display ultrasonic fingerprint sensors used in Galaxy S10 and Note 10 lineups, which has been facing a myriad of security issues reported earlier. (Digitimes, Yahoo, Digitimes, WCCFtech)

Phone

Gartner’s annual top 10 strategic technology trends highlight trends that enterprises need to consider as part of their 5-year strategic technology planning process. The future will be characterized by smart devices delivering increasingly insightful digital services everywhere. Gartner calls this the “intelligent digital mesh”. (Gartner report)

UBS’ proprietary Tear Down analysis (in association with Fomalhaut) of Apple iPhone 11s show declining bill of materials (BOM) costs vs. models in 2018. They estimate the BOM cost for iPhone 11 / 11 Pro / 11 Pro Max to be USD316 /  USD400 /  USD425 respectively, overall down by 4% compared to models in 2018. Key content gainers include LG Innotek (100% triple cam market share), Sharp (majority of dual cam), Sony, and Largan. O-Film also started supplying dual-cams although its balance sheet may pre-empt capacity expansion. (UBS report)

According to QuestMobile data, as of Apr 2019, the number of users of pan-entertainment reached 1.068B. Several of the multi-entertainment users have a cliff-like stratification phenomenon, with short video users accounting for the highest proportion, with a scale of 216M. In addition, in Apr 2019, the average per-capital video used in the period of time was 327.5 hours, which is 3.52 times that of the second game live per capita. (Guolian Securities report)

ZTE has launched new Blade series in U.S.: Blade 10 / 10 Prime – 6.3” 1080×2280 FHD+ TFT, MediaTek Helio P60, rear dual 16MP-5MP + front 16MP, 3+64GB, Android 9.0, rear fingerprint scanner, 3200mAh, USD179. Blade A7 Prime – 6.088” 720×1560 HD+ TFT, MediaTek Helio A22, rear 16MP + front 5MP, 3+32GB, Android 9.0, rear fingerprint scanner, 3200mAh, USD99. (Android Central, Android Authority, GSM Arena)

Huawei Y9s is launched in Pakistan – 6.59” 2340×1080 FHD+ TFT, Huawei Kirin 710F, rear tri 48MP-8MP ultrawide-2MP depth + front pop-up 16MP, 6+128GB, Android 9.0, side fingerprint scanner, 4000mAh 10W, PKR32,999 (USD223). (Gizmo China, Huawei, NDTV)

Wearables

According to Strategy Analytics, global smartwatch shipments grew an impressive +42% YoY to reach 14M units in 3Q19. Apple Watch maintained first position with 48% global smartwatch market share, while Samsung held second place, and Fitbit clung on to third. (GSM Arena, Strategy Analytics, Apple Insider)

Augmented / Virtual Reality

Security firm Sword is to begin a mass rollout of Vuzix smart glasses to be used in conjunction with Apple iPads for a threat detection system intended for airports, sports arenas and federal buildings. Apple has not announced the deal, but Sword has confirmed it is spending an initial USD7.1M on the smart glasses. (Apple Insider, McDaily News)

Artificial Intelligence

LG’s Advanced AI division has developed Auptimizer, an open source hyperparameter optimization framework intended to help with AI model tweaking and bookkeeping. Auptimizer simplifies the process of configuring a volume of models with a variety of configurations — with reproducibility. (VentureBeat, ARVIX)

Fintech

France’s Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire has revealed there could be progress in 2020 on the feasibility of a digital currency backed by the European Central Bank, but acknowledged the plan was for the long term and faced challenges. (My Drivers, Reuters, NY Times)

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