Based on sanctions imposed on Huawei by the U.S. Bureau of Industry and Security on August 17, semiconductor components containing U.S.-originated technologies or software from September 15 onward can no longer be shipped to Huawei without permission from the U.S. Department of Commerce. TrendForce indicates that Huawei has been amassing a strategic reserve of components from U.S. suppliers since 2019 in hopes of lessening the impact of the tightening trade restrictions on its device production later on. According to TrendForce’s latest analysis, Huawei’s annual smartphone production for 2020 will still reach around 170 million units. This figure is a downward correction of about 10% compared with the earlier projection of 190 million units (based on the series of export control rules levied against the company on May 15). Later revisions to the brand’s annual production volume will depend on the sufficiency status of materials.
Demand for notebook computers (NBs) across the globe experienced an explosive growth in 2Q20 due to increased WFH and distance education demand generated by the COVID-19 pandemic, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. Of all product categories within the NB market, Chromebooks are expected to exhibit the highest percentage of YoY shipment growth for 2020. TrendForce currently projects total Chromebook shipment for 2020 to reach 24.3 million units, a 42.4% increase YoY. As WFH and distance education demand continues to propel the NB market, TrendForce expects total NB shipment to reach 55 million units for 3Q20, a 4% increase QoQ.
The COVID-19 pandemic has compelled governments worldwide to impose border closures and regional lockdowns, which led to significant declines in various countries’ GDPs this year. As economic and social activities around the world have stagnated, the performance of the smartphone industry was severely damaged in 2Q20. According to TrendForce’s latest investigations, total smartphone production reached 286 million units in 2Q20, a slight QoQ rebound of 2.2%, but a 16.7% decrease YoY, which is the largest quarterly YoY drop in history.
On August 17, the U.S. Department of Commerce announced the latest revisions to its Entity List, which now includes 38 additional Huawei subsidiaries. Suppliers are prohibited from providing semiconductor products and components manufactured with U.S. equipment and software to Huawei and its subsidiaries. TrendForce provides the following analyses on the impacts that the expanded sanctions against Huawei have on five tech industries, including semiconductors, memory products, smartphones, display panels, and 5G communications.
TV panel prices have been maintaining their upswing in August, with 55-inch panels and 32-inch panels each registering price hikes of about 10%, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. IT panel prices have also been gradually rising, thanks to stable demand from end-markets. Most panel manufacturers are thus expected to make a rebound out of the seven consecutive quarterly losses they had previously suffered and finally turn a profit, in either August or September. As such, the panel industry is projected to make a significant improvement in terms of profitability in 3Q20.