Technology Bulletin

    • Small Cars Sales in EU to Suffer the Most with Str...
    • Jun 4, 2019
    • "Mandatory safety features and stringent emission norms in EU will affect sales of mini and small cars (costing US$10,000-US$15,000) the most as technology... View More
      "Mandatory safety features and stringent emission norms in EU will affect sales of mini and small cars (costing US$10,000-US$15,000) the most as technology upgrades to meet these mandates cost more or less same (a few thousand dollars) for a small or mid-size car. Tougher EU rules require automakers to reduce average fleet CO2 emissions from 120.8 grams per kilometer (g/km) to 95 g/km by 2021 to 80.8 g/km by 2025.  Automakers operating on already thin margins on mini and small cars would find it difficult to absorb the extra cost. Tough standards adopted by the EU are good to control pollution and encourage new technologies, but risk making EU an unattractive market (at least for mid-term) for small cars." - Aman Madhok (Source: Automotive News Europe)
    • VW to Rework $56 Billion Battery Push on Samsung D...
    • Jun 4, 2019
    • "Media reports suggest that Volkswagen might change its battery supply agreement worth US$55.8 billion with Samsung SDI. The point is that Volkswagen and S... View More
      "Media reports suggest that Volkswagen might change its battery supply agreement worth US$55.8 billion with Samsung SDI. The point is that Volkswagen and Samsung previously agreed on the supply of 20GWh worth of batteries, but Samsung SDI will instead supply 5GWh worth of batteries due to disagreement on output and schedule. Both companies do not mention any details citing NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement) regarding this news. In the past, Volkswagen reportedly issued long-term battery supply contracts worth around US$50 billion for over 300GWh in total with multiple battery manufacturers for its future EV fleet on the MEB (Modular Electric Drive Kit) platform. Volkswagen split those billions worth of contracts between several companies - Samsung SDI, LG Chem, SK Innovation, and CATL. Thus, the contract amount of US$55.8 billion mentioned above must be the total amount for all the suppliers, not Samsung SDI only. Such long-term multi-vendor contracts will help to clear supply bottlenecks at a time of soaring demand and hold out the promise of cheaper batteries over time. Here, the initial contracts for long-term supply are not usually 100% fixed and somewhat flexible, depending on the market situation in the future. Even if we cannot get the specific reason for their contract adjustment, it seems real that Samsung SDI is focussing on the profitability of a contract rather than the size of a contract, unlike other vendors who do have another cash cow beside the battery business." - Liz Lee (Source: Bloomberg)
    • SK Innovation Unveils Bold Plans for NCM 811
    • Jun 4, 2019
    • "The company plans to increase NCM 811 (batteries with Nickel, Cobalt, and Manganese at a ratio of 8:1:1) capacity to 100 GWh from the current 5GWh, by 202... View More
      "The company plans to increase NCM 811 (batteries with Nickel, Cobalt, and Manganese at a ratio of 8:1:1) capacity to 100 GWh from the current 5GWh, by 2025. While battery companies including CATL are racing to launch NCM 811 to gain an early mover advantage, many industry participants believe NCM 811 can co-exist with other battery configurations (NCM 523 and NCM 622) especially with declining cobalt prices which is leading to a reduction in the price gap between the above configurations. The ending of subsidies in China (which currently favors long-range NCM 811 powered EVs) would further hamper the growth of NCM 811 configurations going forward. Battery companies could scale down or modify their ambitious expansion plans based on market conditions." - Aman Madhok (Source: The Wall Street Journal)
    • Hyundai Motor to Dump LG Chem for China's Battery ...
    • Jun 4, 2019
    • "Hyundai Motor will use the Chinese company CATL's batteries in its electric SUV scheduled to debut in China later this year. This is to get an advanta... View More
      "Hyundai Motor will use the Chinese company CATL's batteries in its electric SUV scheduled to debut in China later this year. This is to get an advantage from the Chinese government's subsidy policy. It is worthwhile to recall that in Korea, the US, and Europe, the same vehicle has an LG Chem battery. As a result, Hyundai has not been able to place a name on the vehicle to be subsidized by the Chinese government and to be able to secure price competitiveness in China. Hyundai’s move is no doubt, a strategy followed by what Tesla had to do, which is investing in a local gigafactory in China to stay competitive with its Model 3." - Sujeong Lim (Source: Korea Times)
    • Mobile Broadband (eMBB) Leads Early Use Cases for ...
    • May 28, 2019
    • "As a pilot city for 5G network construction, Shanghai has been at the forefront of exploring 5G applications. By leveraging the high mobile broadband and ... View More
      "As a pilot city for 5G network construction, Shanghai has been at the forefront of exploring 5G applications. By leveraging the high mobile broadband and low latency, hospitals in Shanghai are able to extend their medical service, such as real-time and remote consultation by combing ultrasounds with the 5G network. Besides, 5G has also been put into use in the entertainment industry and contributed to improving experiences in terms of new media, sports broadcasting, VR, and games. In the early adoption of 5G, eMBB enabled applications are destined to play a pivotal role." - Ethan Qi (Source: Xinhua Net)
    • Verizon Becomes the Third Operator to Start NB-IoT...
    • May 28, 2019
    • "Verizon has become the third operator to start a commercial NB-IoT network in the US. Earlier, AT&T started commercial NB-IoT operations in April 2019... View More
      "Verizon has become the third operator to start a commercial NB-IoT network in the US. Earlier, AT&T started commercial NB-IoT operations in April 2019, while T-Mobile went live in July 2018. All three networks are using guard band spectrum, to avoid interference with smartphone traffic and maximize spectrum utilization. The telecom giant will test and qualify Telit, SIMCOM, and Quectel modules for the newly launched network. Verizon already has LTE-M network, along with voice support. It plans to utilize NB-IoT network for stationary IoT devices with low bandwidth needs, while LTE-M will cater to mission-critical IoT applications with marginally higher bandwidth needs. NB-IoT will be critical to applications like smart cities, smart meters, agriculture, and smart buildings." - Hanish Bhatia (Source: Mobile World Live)
    • Kaios Raises $50M, Hits 100M Handsets Powered by I...
    • May 28, 2019
    • "KaiOS has garnered more than 100 million active users and poised for further growth. It gives a huge opportunity for all the mobile industry stakeholders ... View More
      "KaiOS has garnered more than 100 million active users and poised for further growth. It gives a huge opportunity for all the mobile industry stakeholders to monetize from the growing user base through services such as connectivity, applications, content, search & discovery, advertisements, payments, location-based services, among others. India and Middle East Africa will drive the smart feature phone segment, which, according to Counterpoint Research, will be a potentialUS$28 billion opportunity in the next three years for the Industry." - Tarun Pathak (Source: Tech Crunch)
    • China’s ByteDance Plans to Develop Its Own Smartph...
    • May 28, 2019
    • "Chinese apps, content, and services giants have grown to a user base of nearly a billion users globally. It is almost rivaling major OEMs or smartphone pl... View More
      "Chinese apps, content, and services giants have grown to a user base of nearly a billion users globally. It is almost rivaling major OEMs or smartphone platform vendors. Further, players such as ByteDance and Tencent are seeing 40-60% of the users’ share of digital lives spent in their ecosystem. This is prompting these tech giants to build their own hardware with tightly integrated apps, content, cloud, and services which are visible front and center in the hardware. Mobile Gaming and Video are two sticky and lucrative services which these players aim to monetize. Aswe predicted a few years ago, Hardware-as-a-Distribution (HaaD) is going to be important for many of these tech giants to attract premium and highly engaged users. It will allow users to immerse themselves in the company's experiences further, creating more value for everyone. While this play is warranted, the volumes initially might be still niche, and sales might not cross more than a few million units in the first few years." - Neil Shah (Source: Financial Times)
    • Due to Rising Trade Dispute Pegatron Is Shifting S...
    • May 28, 2019
    • "Pegatron, a Taiwanese electronics manufacturing company, is shifting some of its production for Apple products, mainly iPads and MacBooks, from China. Thi... View More
      "Pegatron, a Taiwanese electronics manufacturing company, is shifting some of its production for Apple products, mainly iPads and MacBooks, from China. This is due to the rising trade dispute between the US and China. Apple is one of the key players that can be affected due to trade sanctions. Pegatron has recently partnered with PT Sat Nusapersada which will start assembly in June 2019, as per their CEO. Key players are looking outside China for assembling phones and other electronics, due to rising trade tensions. Vietnam, India, and Indonesia are a few options available. Pegatron also looked at Vietnam, which has a mature ecosystem, but later chose Batam, Indonesia. Key reasons for choosing Indonesia was rising investment, availability of skilled labor, and a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) agreement between Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore."- Parv Sharma (Source: DetikCom)
    • Huawei to Launch Its Own OS in China This Autumn
    • May 28, 2019
    • "With the recent announcement from Google and Microsoft to comply with the US sanction on Huawei, the Chinese smartphone company is forced to launch its ow... View More
      "With the recent announcement from Google and Microsoft to comply with the US sanction on Huawei, the Chinese smartphone company is forced to launch its own operating system for smartphone and PCs. Huawei had earlier indicated that it has been working on creating is own OS for smartphone and PCs as a last resort for such a situation. The company’s latest flagship due to launch this autumn will sport this. The new OS might work in China where popular apps like Facebook, Instagram, and others, are replaced by locally customized apps like Weibo and Renren. Huawei also hosts its own app store in China, but for markets outside, it becomes impossible for Huawei to provide competitive services due to the lack of developer support. If the US ban goes on for long, Huawei will lose its dominance in the smartphone market, and it will become difficult for the brand to retain the same growth rate in the future." - Shobhit Srivastava (Source: CNBC)

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