12-22 #WinterSolstice : OnePlus 8T includes Electronic Color, Material and Finish (ECMF) to dynamically change color; Samsung is working on diversifying its portfolio of entry-level 5G smartphones; OPPO is all set to start production in 2 facilities in Turkey; etc.

Apple’s release of the iPhone 12, which has been popular in the consumer markets, led to soaring demand for Qualcomm’s 5G modems and RF chips, in turn propelling Qualcomm’s revenues past that of its rival Broadcom once again to clinch the number one spot in the revenue ranking of global top 10 IC design (fabless) companies for 3Q20, according to TrendForce. With USD4.967B in quarterly revenue, a 37.6% YoY increase, Qualcomm retook the first spot on the top 10 list despite the delayed release of the iPhone 12.  (Laoyaoba, TrendForce, TrendForce)

Horizon Robotics, a 5-year-old unicorn specializing in AI chips for robots and autonomous vehicles, has announced that it has secured USD150M in funding. The proceeds are the first close of an over USD700M Series C round that Horizon is seeking to raise. Horizon’s OEM and Tier 1 auto partners, according to the firm, include Audi, Bosch, Continental, SAIC Motor and BYD. (TechCrunch, Horizon Robotics)

In a move aimed at incentivizing and attracting investment for setting up of chip manufacturing in India, the Union Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has issued a notice inviting Expression of Interest (EoI) for setting up / expansion of existing Semiconductor wafer / device fabrication (FAB) facilities in India or acquisition of Semiconductor FABs outside India. (Swarajya, India Gov, Laoyaoba)

Samsung has allegedly a triple foldable tablet planned for 2021. It also has a transparent display phone scheduled for 2021 too. The triple foldable tablet is a device that has its screen divided into three parts but has two hinges. The transparent phone should have its components at the bottom rather than behind the screen and then projects content onto a display that appears to be transparent. (CN Beta, WCCFTech, LetsGoDigital, Twitter, Gizmo China)

The new Xiaomi foldable smartphone is expected to be unveiled before the Xiaomi tablet goes live. It will be a device with a large screen and a high refresh rate, powerful performance and a high-pixel lens. It is planned to launch in 2021. (Laoyaoba, GizChina, My Drivers)

Xiaomi has filed a patent with WIPO for a wraparound display phone. As per the design, the phone has a pop-up system that contains 3 cameras with dual-LED flash. (Android Headlines, Tiger Mobiles, LetsGoDigital)

OnePlus’ new concept phone OnePlus 8T includes Electronic Color, Material and Finish (ECMF) to dynamically change color. The ECMF film uses mmWave technology to create low-latency interactions with the phone itself. OnePlus envisages the OnePlus 8T ECMF facilitating a new mode of gesture-focused interaction. (CN Beta, Android Authority, Android Central)

The planned total investment of Visionox AMOLED module production line in Guangzho is CNY11.2B. The company is planning to build 17~20 curved and folding screen module production lines. The designed annual production capacity of the project is about 50M modules. The project is officially launched at the beginning of 2020. The topping of the main plant is completed ahead of schedule on 28 Aug 2020 and the process equipment moved in on 8 Nov 2020. The first product is expected to be delivered around the Spring Festival in 2021. (Laoyaoba, Sohu, Guangzhou.gov)

Holitech has stated that the Indian smartphone market has strong demand and huge potential. Smartphones are becoming a rigid demand for Indians, and the annual growth rate is the best in the world. The company is one of the first companies to set up factories in India and start mass production. It has a good “pilot advantage”. In 2021, the Indian factory will consider expanding production based on customer demands. (Laoyaoba, Sohu, Moqie Home)

Apple is moving forward with self-driving car technology and is targeting 2024 to produce a passenger vehicle that could include its own breakthrough battery technology. Apple plans to use a unique “monocell” design that bulks up the individual cells in the battery and frees up space inside the battery pack by eliminating pouches and modules that hold battery materials. (CN Beta, 9to5Mac, Apple Insider, Reuters)

LG’s new battery business unit is set to become the first company to produce batteries with nickel, cobalt, manganese and aluminum (NCMA) anode materials for EVs in 2021. LG Energy Solution is set to provide the NCMA batteries to Tesla. The NCMA battery cathode is 90% nickel and the percentage of cobalt is below 5%. (My Drivers, Business Korea, Korea Times)

NEC has announced the establishment of an Open RAN laboratory in India as a complement to its Center of Excellence (CoE) in the U.K. The new facility will accelerate development of NEC’s 5G open ecosystem by pre-integrating partner Open RAN components to form end-to-end commercial-ready solutions according to customer-specific needs. (Laoyaoba, RCR Wireless, Light Reading)

AT&T is reportedly mulling a cancellation of its auction for DirecTV after receiving disappointing offers for its beleaguered satellite TV service. AT&T is trying to pare its heavy debt load. DirecTV has struggled since AT&T paid USD63M for it in 2015. (CN Beta, Ars Technica, The Street, NY Post)

Samsung Electronics will reportedly launch Galaxy series A32, A52 and A72 in 1H21 after launching Galaxy S21 in Jan 2020. It is reported that the corresponding models will support 5G at a lower price, each with 3 to 5 cameras, and a 3.5 mm headphone jack. (CN Beta, Sohu, YNA)

Samsung is working on diversifying its portfolio of entry-level 5G smartphones. Samsung plans to release the Galaxy A22 5G in 2H21 for KRW200,000 (USD181). Samsung is reportedly going to employ the Joint Development Manufacturer (JDM) model for the production of the device. Around 20~30% of the company’s phones shipped in 2020 are made using the JDM method apparently. ODM phones are expected to account for 10% of total shipments in 2020. (Phone Arena, DAUM, CN Beta, GSM Arena)

OPPO has entered the Turkish market sometime back and now the company is all set to start production in 2 facilities, one in Istanbul and another in Northwestern Kocaeli province. It is expected to start operations in Jan 2021. Samsung Electronics also plans to start production in Turkey by hiring a sub-contractor in Istanbul. (Gizmo China, Bloomberght, DailySabah)

Facebook and Alphabet’s Google have agreed to “cooperate and assist one another” if they ever faced an investigation into their pact to work together in online advertising, according to an unredacted version of a lawsuit filed by 10 states against Google. The lawsuit itself said Google and Facebook were aware that their agreement could trigger antitrust investigations and discussed how to deal with them, in a passage that is followed by significant redactions. (CN Beta, WSJ, Yahoo)

Google has led an investment of USD145M in InMobi’s social media startups Glance and Roposo, which are division’s InMobi’s mobile app marketing business. Glance is an AI-driven lock feed platform that provides personalized content in multiple languages on the lock screen of Android smartphones. Roposo is India’s short video platform with more than 33M monthly active users who spend 20 minutes daily consuming content across multiple genres in more than 10 languages. (CN Beta, VentureBeat)

Pete Lao, the CEO of OnePlus, has stated that the company is working with Google to improve Wear OS. This improvement in communication between wearables, smartphones and TVs will boost the interoperability between the different platforms. (Gizmo China, 9to5Google, Input)

Huawei has officially released Huawei‘s smart home strategy and whole-house smart solutions, and at the same time launched new Huawei smart screen S series products that integrate the concept of “usually always new”. Huawei and its ecosystem partners have created a new smart home infrastructure construction solution-Huawei’s all-house smart ALL IN ONE solution. (CN Beta, Sina, ZOL)

Huawei Smart Screen S and Smart Screen S Pro launched. Three models are provided, including S55 (60Hz and 120Hz two versions), S Pro 65 and S Pro 75. The sizes include 55”, 65”, and 75”. The main features are 120Hz display quality, 13M AI camera, and HarmonyOS Distributed Multi-screen. Huawei Smart Screen S starts at CNy3299, and Huawei Smart Screen S Pro starts at CNY5699. (My Drivers, GizChina, Gizmo China)

Peloton, the leading interactive fitness platform, has announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Precor, one of the largest global commercial fitness equipment providers with a significant U.S. manufacturing presence, in a transaction valued at USD420M. (TechCrunch, Peloton, Engadget)

Huawei has announced the Huawei Smart Selection Car Smart Screen. The smart screen carries a price tag of CNY1699 (USD259). To realize cross-screen mobile phone applications, it can be paired with a smartphone via WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity. It also supports smart home linkage, cockpit games, etc. (CN Beta, Gizmo China, GizChina)

IHS Markit forecasts new light vehicle sales of 83.4M globally in 2021, up 9% from a 2020 projection of 76.5M, as industry demand levels emerge in 2021 in the wake of recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic – especially in major markets. The forecast assumes that effective vaccines will be widely available by mid-2021, although full availability is not expected until sometime in 2022. (CN Beta, Seeking Alpha, Business Wire, Sina)

U.S. Department of Commerce included DJI among the 77 new entries on its ‘entity list’. DJI has indicated that customers in America can continue to buy and use DJI products normally; DJI remains committed to developing the industry’s most innovative products that define the company and benefit the world. (Engadget, TechCrunch, Gizmo China, Reuters)

Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com (Jingdong) has announced an e-sports gaming phone alliance in partnership with players in the gaming industry. The alliance anchors on JD’s expertise in the supply chain, technology, distribution, marketing, and payment solutions to upgrade the gaming ecosystem and to make JD the top choice for customers purchasing gaming devices. (Gizmo China, JD Corporate, CC Time, ZOL)

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