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Technology Bulletin

    • Marelli and Highly Establish New Joint Venture
    • Sep 8, 2020
    • Japanese automotive supplier Marelli and Shanghai-listed Highly International have reached an agreement to establish a new joint venture, Highly Marelli, to foc... View More
      Japanese automotive supplier Marelli and Shanghai-listed Highly International have reached an agreement to establish a new joint venture, Highly Marelli, to focus on heating, ventilation & air conditioning (HVAC) and electric driven compressor (EDC) systems. (Marelli) Soumen's key takeaways:  The JV follows Marelli’s acquisition of equity interest in Shanghai Highly New Energy Technology Co from Johnson Controls-Hitachi Air Conditioning in August 2019. With this JV, Marelli will get access to the growing automotive market in China. Also, Marelli is now another step closer to becoming a globally diversified Tier 1 supplier.  Marelli’s expertise in thermal management solutions will help Highly to improve its products and create better value for customers.
    • GM Partners Honda to Develop Cars in N America
    • Sep 8, 2020
    • General Motors and Honda will share common vehicle platforms for EVs and ICEs. Co-development will start immediately, with engineering work starting in 2021. ... View More
      General Motors and Honda will share common vehicle platforms for EVs and ICEs. Co-development will start immediately, with engineering work starting in 2021. (ET Auto) Aman's key takeaways:  In 2018, Honda bought a stake in GM Cruise to share engineering expertise in developing AVs. In April this year, GM partnered with Honda to develop electric vehicles (EVs) for Honda. Prior track record of partnership will help both the companies. Automakers need investment to develop disruptive technologies like EVs and AVs. With any industry rebound taking around two years, partnerships and alliances are a good way to share costs. 
    • Nokia Powers the Grid in China for the World’s Big...
    • Sep 8, 2020
    • Nokia today announced that the State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC), the largest utility company in the world, will deploy a programmable and agile optical ne... View More
      Nokia today announced that the State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC), the largest utility company in the world, will deploy a programmable and agile optical network using Nokia’s leading IP/Optical solutions. The deployment will allow SGCC to expand network coverage to more power stations and business offices, while also increasing capacity and flexibility. (September 3, Nokia Newsroom) Gareth Owen's key takeaways: Nokia’s refocus in China to other parts of the mobile network (e.g. core and transport) is bearing fruit, as we see with this WaveFabric DC switching solution win.    It also won two DC interconnect contracts with Baidu and Tencent, as well as a 10% share of China Unicom’s 5G SA core network earlier this year.  With the WaveFabric platform, we believe Nokia is going to benefit from the start of a new 10-year webscale data hardware replacement cycle. 
    • LG Embarks on New Mobile Initiative to Explore the...
    • Sep 8, 2020
    • LG Electronics (LG) is kicking off the Explorer Project with a 30-second invitation video hinting at the first smartphone under this new lineup. Explorer Projec... View More
      LG Electronics (LG) is kicking off the Explorer Project with a 30-second invitation video hinting at the first smartphone under this new lineup. Explorer Project is both an initiative and a category and will include devices that deliver distinctive and yet unexplored usability experiences, a strategy that tackles uncharted territory in the industry. Details of the Explorer Project will be officially announced September 14 at 10:00 (EDT) on LG Mobile’s official YouTube channel and Facebook page. (September 2, LG Newsroom) Ankit Malhotra's key takeaways: LG seems to have already confirmed the LG Wing as its first Explorer Project device.  Apart from a few foldables, form factors and designs for the last few years have needed innovation and excitement. Kudos to LG for formalizing their ambitions with this initiative. It will be interesting to see how successful they are in incubating features which trickle down to their Universal Line products. 
    • Vodafone UK Launches Live OpenRAN Network for Rura...
    • Sep 8, 2020
    • Vodafone UK has become the first UK mobile operator to switch on an OpenRAN 4G site, partnering with Mavenir, the industry’s only end-to-end cloud-native ... View More
      Vodafone UK has become the first UK mobile operator to switch on an OpenRAN 4G site, partnering with Mavenir, the industry’s only end-to-end cloud-native Network Software Provider for Communications Service Providers (CSPs). (September 2, Total Telecom) Jan Stryjak's key takeaways: Not only is this about cost-effectively extending 4G services to rural communities, but more importantly, it is about introducing new suppliers into the radio network after the Huawei ban. OpenRAN is gaining momentum in Europe, with operators given an extra incentive to diversify their vendor portfolio. While this is "only" a 4G service, it will be interesting to see how this develops as 5G picks up speed.
    • Qualcomm Will Bring 5G to $125 Phones From Motorol...
    • Sep 8, 2020
    • Partners such as Motorola, Xiaomi and Oppo will introduce devices based on Qualcomm's upcoming 5G-enabled 4-Series Snapdragon chips. (September 3, CNET) ... View More
      Partners such as Motorola, Xiaomi and Oppo will introduce devices based on Qualcomm's upcoming 5G-enabled 4-Series Snapdragon chips. (September 3, CNET) Jeff Fieldhack's key takeaways: We’re only 18 months into 5G sales and the headline numbers highlight the steep price erosion in the market.  These price points will allow global carriers to accelerate sales and adoption and begin seeing 5G investment returns.  Specs used to take two to three years to fall from premium to entry – today it is between one year and 18 months. Expect mmWave to hit the 4-series by H2 2021 or early 2022.
    • Deadline Closing in on Huawei - at Least in Terms ...
    • Sep 8, 2020
    • Huawei has a stockpile of about 10 million Kirin 9000 chips that will support shipments for about half a year, one telecom expert said, as the "deadline&qu... View More
      Huawei has a stockpile of about 10 million Kirin 9000 chips that will support shipments for about half a year, one telecom expert said, as the "deadline" for production of the Kirin 9000 is drawing near after the US government moved to block shipments of semiconductors to Huawei Technologies from global chipmakers. (September 6, Global Times) Peter Richardson's key takeaways:  This provides for a limited run of Mate 40s, most of which will be sold in China given no GMS. And the 10m unit number assumes Huawei has all the other parts it needs to produce the Mate 40 – no small task in itself. There is a glimmer of hope – that suppliers can obtain licenses to continue selling merchant components to Huawei, but this is unlikely to include TSMC.    
    • Deadline Closing in on Huawei - at Least in Terms ...
    • Sep 8, 2020
    • Huawei has a stockpile of about 10 million Kirin 9000 chips that will support shipments for about half a year, one telecom expert said, as the "deadline&qu... View More
      Huawei has a stockpile of about 10 million Kirin 9000 chips that will support shipments for about half a year, one telecom expert said, as the "deadline" for production of the Kirin 9000 is drawing near after the US government moved to block shipments of semiconductors to Huawei Technologies from global chipmakers. (September 6, Global Times) Peter Richardson's key takeaways:  This provides for a limited run of Mate 40s, most of which will be sold in China given no GMS. And the 10m unit number assumes Huawei has all the other parts it needs to produce the Mate 40 – no small task in itself. There is a glimmer of hope – that suppliers can obtain licenses to continue selling merchant components to Huawei, but this is unlikely to include TSMC.    
    • Smartwatch Brands Adjusting Supply Chain Deploymen...
    • Sep 1, 2020
    • Some smartwatch vendors have adjusted their supply chains, either by switching related suppliers or relocating production bases, to adapt to changing global mic... View More
      Some smartwatch vendors have adjusted their supply chains, either by switching related suppliers or relocating production bases, to adapt to changing global micro situations in order to sustain the highest amount and stable benefits over the past two years. Among the top-5 vendors, China-based Huawei and Garmin, whose manufacturing bases are located in Taiwan, have not made much changes to their supply chains, but Apple, Samsung Electronics and Fitbit are those that have been forced to overhaul their supply chains, including efforts to build manufacturing facilities in India. (Digitimes, August 31) Neil Shah's key takeaways: Moving outside of China could help suppliers in the smartwatch market to scale faster.  Further, Google's acquisition of Fitbit will contribute to rejigging of the supply chain in coming years.  The intent and pressure to move design and manufacturing outside of China also means an opportunity for suppliers to scale up their relationship with growing brands like Apple. Samsung looking to start manufacturing in India makes it a key market for suppliers to set up base.
    • Apple Supplier JDI to Sell Plant to Sharp for $386...
    • Sep 1, 2020
    • Struggling Apple supplier Japan Display plans to sell a smartphone screen factory and the land it sits on to Sharp for 41.2 billion yen ($386 million), the comp... View More
      Struggling Apple supplier Japan Display plans to sell a smartphone screen factory and the land it sits on to Sharp for 41.2 billion yen ($386 million), the company has announced. A deal for the Hakusan liquid crystal display plant in Ishikawa Prefecture, along with the sale of equipment there to a customer believed to be Apple, will earn Japan Display $668 million while cutting excess capacity that has weighed on earnings. (Nikkei Asian Review, August 28) Jene Park's key takeaways: With the decline in LCD prices and Apple products shifting to OLED display, JDI wants to bring down LCD production capacity.  JDI is known to be developing low-power small OLEDs, so it is expected that it will be more aggressive on the OLED business. Sharp is expected to increase LCD production capacity, targeting the gap in LCD supply caused by the transition to OLED. With Samsung Display completely stopping its LCD business from 2021, Sharp is expected to support Samsung with LCDs. The Hakusan plant, in particular, is known as the plant that Apple has invested in before. Therefore, there is a possibility of some Apple connection in this Sharp deal.

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