Technology Bulletin

    • Qualcomm Chipset for Affordable Phones
    • Feb 19, 2019
    • "Qualcomm is reportedly working on a new chipset which will be used for entry level phones. This chipset is codenamed as QM215 and will not be the part of ... View More
      "Qualcomm is reportedly working on a new chipset which will be used for entry level phones. This chipset is codenamed as QM215 and will not be the part of Snapdragon series. It will be marketed as Qualcomm Mobile 215 Platform This chipset has a similar architecture as the Snapdragon 410 and 425 and is going to be a quad-core CPU (with Cortex-A53 cores) with frequency of 1.3GHz and a GPU with frequency 650MHz. There is no official announcement from Qualcomm regarding the chipset, but this can be a move to diversify its portfolio. With this move, Qualcomm will have a fair presence in entry level as well as premium segment." - Abhilash Kumar (Source: GSM Arena)
    • Sound Emitting Displays
    • Feb 19, 2019
    • "LG has always been an OEM which introduced new technology in their phones. It will launch the LG G8 with a sound emitting display. Last year at CES, LG la... View More
      "LG has always been an OEM which introduced new technology in their phones. It will launch the LG G8 with a sound emitting display. Last year at CES, LG launched a wallpaper TV which used this technology. It has taken almost a year to get this to a smartphone. Vivo showcased the same technology in their new NEX smartphone, although it was just a technology showcase as the device was a beta product. I think it's the same LG technology, not sure though.  The implications of this tech: 1. This will increase the IP rating of the phones as it will be sealed tighter and there will be fewer holes.  2. This will enable full-screen displays as there would be no need for an earpiece. 3. If there is no notch, you can use the phone upside down!  Apart from this, introduction of TOF sensor for the front camera will enable AR features. But this also means there will be a notch!" - Parv Sharma (Source: The Verge)
    • Growing Interest in Foldable Devices
    • Feb 19, 2019
    • "After Samsung's announcement of a possible launch of smartphones with foldable display this year, there has been increasing interest from different OE... View More
      "After Samsung's announcement of a possible launch of smartphones with foldable display this year, there has been increasing interest from different OEMs to explore foldable smartphones. We think that it is still unclear how convenient foldable phones will be for consumers while still promising a better smartphone user experience. However, Google has announced its support for flexible designs which means developers will pitch-in soon. TCL, in this case, can leverage this opportunity to bring back Blackberry and Palm in the premium market." - Tarun Pathak (Source: CNET)
    • Honda Signs Battery Supply Contract for Around 1 M...
    • Feb 12, 2019
    • "CATL has been able to keep the cost of its batteries under check, thereby gaining big clients like BMW, SAIC, Daimler, Nissan-Renault and (now) Honda... View More
      "CATL has been able to keep the cost of its batteries under check, thereby gaining big clients like BMW, SAIC, Daimler, Nissan-Renault and (now) Honda, since 2017. The company is racing to launch NMC 811 battery chemistry before Korean companies like LG Chem and SK Innovation. According to Counterpoint’s EV study, CATL’s Li-ion battery capacity is expected to reach 50GW in 2020 from 8GW in 2017." - Aman Madhok (Source: Electrek)
    • In EV Charging Expansion, Shell Acquires Greenlots...
    • Feb 12, 2019
    • "In a strategic move, Shell has acquired U.S. EV charger provider Greenlots - a supplier to Volvo and Volkswagen's U.S. subsidiary. Competing with BP ... View More
      "In a strategic move, Shell has acquired U.S. EV charger provider Greenlots - a supplier to Volvo and Volkswagen's U.S. subsidiary. Competing with BP and recognising that customers want to also charge at work and home, this acquisition is important for Shell, as it faces a potential threat to its core downstream business with growing EV adoption. By expanding its EV charging network, Shell is clearly looking to go beyond its petrol stations." - Vinay Piparsania (Source: Reuters)  
    • TomTom Warns Lower Revenues, Shares Drop
    • Feb 12, 2019
    • "Sale of its telematics business to Bridgestone, long term decline from dashboard satellite navigation devices and increasing competition from Google (Rena... View More
      "Sale of its telematics business to Bridgestone, long term decline from dashboard satellite navigation devices and increasing competition from Google (Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance and Volvo opting for Google Maps) and HERE has put pressure on TomTom's revenues.  According to Counterpoint's Location Ecosystem report, TomTom ranks behind Google and HERE for automotive HD maps and would use the proceeds (from the sale of its telematics business) to fund its map-making system to stay ahead in the automotive sector." - Aman Madhok (Source: ET Auto)
    • Lime Raises Another $310 Million, Bringing Its Val...
    • Feb 12, 2019
    • "On-demand electric scooter and bike startup Lime announced that it has closed a $310 million series D financing round led by Andreessen Horowitz, Bain Cap... View More
      "On-demand electric scooter and bike startup Lime announced that it has closed a $310 million series D financing round led by Andreessen Horowitz, Bain Capital Ventures, Fidelity Investments, GV and IVP. It values the company at a whopping $2.4 billion — double the previous valuation of $1.1 billion. Lime is positioning itself as an “affordable” alternative to traditional means of last-mile transportation — it claims that 34 percent of its riders report an annual income of less than $50,000. And it credits that affordability with its mobile app’s rise to the top of download charts in New Zealand, Czech Republic, Austria, Poland, France, Portugal, Greece, and Spain. Its partnerships likely have something to do with it, too. In June, Uber said it would begin renting Lime’s scooters via its app, in addition to investing in the startup. And more recently, in December, Lime integrated with Google Maps in over 20 cities." - Prachir Singh (Source: Venture Beat)
    • UK Supporting Trials of Automated Vehicles, Commit...
    • Feb 12, 2019
    • "Taking cars by the steering wheel, the UK government is looking to stand by its commitment to have fully self-driving vehicles by 2021. Trials on roads ar... View More
      "Taking cars by the steering wheel, the UK government is looking to stand by its commitment to have fully self-driving vehicles by 2021. Trials on roads are planned to commence by the end of the year. Responding to industry and public feedback, the government is also strengthening the code of practice for testing such automated vehicles (AVs), clarifying expectations for safety and responsibility during trials. The public, however, may still not be ready, with research concluding that more than two-thirds of people, expressed anxiety on being picked up by a driverless car.  With the UK’s market for connected and automated vehicles estimated to be worth £52 billion by 2035, an urgency to introduce AVs, as the next generation of vehicles, could be understood." -Vinay Piparsania (Source: Smart Cities World)
    • Meizu And Vivo Bring Us Closer to a Smartphone Fut...
    • Feb 5, 2019
    • "Meizu and Vivo have presented new smartphones with no openings whatsoever (no buttons, ports, speaker grills, SIM card drawers etc.) and with bezel-less a... View More
      "Meizu and Vivo have presented new smartphones with no openings whatsoever (no buttons, ports, speaker grills, SIM card drawers etc.) and with bezel-less and notch-less screens. It means that the phones offer wireless charging and the users will have to listen to music via Bluetooth headphones. Additionally, the phones have optical in-display fingerprint sensors and no SIM card enclosures because both phones are equipped with e-SIMs. Is this really the future form-factor of smartphones? On the user side, it has a big advantage of maximizing the display utilization. Conversely, this concept means that the users can not charge the phone without a wireless charging pad, no way to connect wired headphones or even to replace the SIM card. There seems to be no additional benefits for the users to purchase except for the ones who consider design integral." - SuJeong Lim (Source: The Star Online)
    • Telefonica Centroamérica Inversiones Agrees to the...
    • Feb 5, 2019
    • "Telefonica Spain just announced that it sold its Guatemala and El Salvador mobile business to America Movil-Claro (AMX). The Mexican mega operator will pa... View More
      "Telefonica Spain just announced that it sold its Guatemala and El Salvador mobile business to America Movil-Claro (AMX). The Mexican mega operator will pay USD 333M for the Guatemala property and it is a done deal. And it will pay USD 315M for El Salvador but it is still subject to regulatory approval. Guatemala have currently three main carriers: Tigo (53% share), Claro (27% share) and Movistar (Telefonica-18% share). After the acquisition, Claro’s share will jump from 27% to 45%, though it will still remain behind Tigo but it is getting quite close. El Salvador’s top three carriers are Tigo (33% share), Claro (31% share) and Movistar (24% share). After the acquisition, Claro will become the dominant operator with more than 54% share. Therefore, El Salvador’s deal is still pending for regulatory approval. Telefonica said that this transaction was part of the group’s new strategy of improving return on capital and strategic positioning." - Tina Lu (Source: Telefonica)

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