Consumer Electronics


[News] Possible 30% Cut in Orders for New iPad Pro, Impacting TSMC, Foxconn, and Novatek

Apple’s upcoming iPad Pro, featuring an OLED screen for the first time, is scheduled to be released in March or April. However, recent market reports suggest a potential 30% reduction in the estimated order volume, indicating Apple’s cautious outlook on the new product. It’s anticipated that suppliers in the supply chain such as LG Display (LGD), TSMC, Foxconn, and Novatek will also be affected.

Aju Korea Daily, citing industry sources, reported that Apple has reduced the OLED screen orders for its new iPad Pro. The initial order of 10 million units has been adjusted to a range of 7 million to 8 million units. LGD is expected to be the most impacted, with the supply scale decreasing from 6 million units to a minimum of 3 million units, while Samsung maintains a supply of 4 million units.

Industry speculation suggests that the reduction in the initial order may be due to a cautious outlook on the demand in the early stages of the product launch. The pricing of the new iPad Pro has not been determined, but it is likely to be higher than the current iPad with an LCD screen.

Historically, all iPad models from Apple have utilized LCD panels. However, this year’s release of the 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models marks the first time Apple is incorporating OLED panels.

On another note, in addition to applying OLED screens to the iPad Pro this year, Apple reportedly plans to use them in future laptop products such as the MacBook. Therefore, the performance of the OLED iPad in terms of sales will serve as a significant market indicator for Apple’s future ventures into OLED technology.

Additionally, the adoption of OLED screens will result in an increase in the price of the iPad Pro. The loyalty of iPad consumers has traditionally been lower than that of iPhone users, posing a challenge for Apple in achieving strong performance this year.

The estimated order volume reduction is expected to have an impact on the iPad Pro supply chain, affecting key manufacturers such as TSMC, Foxconn, and Novatek.

According to sources cited by the Economic Daily News, TSMC is the exclusive supplier of Apple’s chips, while Foxconn is the main assembly plant for the iPad Pro. Novatek is a supplier of OLED screen driver ICs for the Korean market. However, the mentioned companies have refrained from commenting on specific clients and products.

TSMC has been the primary manufacturer of main chips for various Apple devices. Last year, there were reports in the market that Apple secured TSMC’s 3-nanometer production capacity for at least a year.

Despite current market uncertainties, TSMC estimates that the semiconductor market will see a growth of over 10% this year, with the foundry industry expected to grow by 20%. TSMC’s financial performance is projected to outpace industry standards, demonstrating quarterly growth.

Novatek previously indicated that there might be competition in the OLED driver IC sector this year. Nevertheless, the company plans to continue its strategic focus on advanced products such as applications for foldable devices, OLED touch, and integrated touch and display driver ICs (TDDI).

As for Foxconn, the company is gradually entering the traditional off-season. Seasonal performance is expected to be similar to the past three years. In the first quarter of 2023, higher shipment volume resulting from the resumption of normal production in Chinese factories post-pandemic is anticipated to lead to a year-on-year decline in performance for the first quarter of this year.

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(Photo credit: Apple)

Please note that this article cites information from Economic Daily News and Aju Korea Daily 


[News] Kirin 9010 Shortage Rumors: Huawei P70 May Use Kirin 9000S in Some Models

According to recent reports, Huawei is expected to unveil its flagship P70 series later this year, alongside the introduction of the new Kirin 9010 chipset. However, there are indications that the older Kirin 9000S might be utilized in a specific model.

Wccftech suggests that the P70 series will include the P70, P70 Pro, and P70 Art, followed by the Mate 70 series. Notably, not all P70 models will feature the new Kirin 9010.

As per insights from the Weibo account Smart Pikachu, the P70 series will boast a custom curved display that is easy on the eyes and power-efficient but lacks a 2K resolution, and the standard version of the P70 is tested with the Kirin 9000S. This may potentially impact the motivation for users who have already purchased the Mate 60 and might not find sufficient reasons to upgrade to the P70.

Wccftech suggests that the adoption of the 9000S in some models could be attributed to the limited supply of the Kirin 9010. The Kirin 9000S, produced by SMIC using a 7nm process, faces production challenges due to the use of older-generation DUV equipment, resulting in a time-consuming and costly manufacturing process with lower yields.

Despite this, there is a glimmer of hope for Huawei’s pricing competitiveness, as the production cost of the Kirin 9000S is expected to be lower than that of the Kirin 9010. This cost advantage could potentially contribute to Huawei’s goal of reaching an estimated shipment volume of 100 million smartphones in 2024, especially considering the company’s historical strength in offering competitive pricing for its base models.

(Image: Huawei)

Please note that this article cites information from WccftechWeibo account Smart Pikachu

[News] Boosting Sales? Rare Price Cuts on Apple China’s Official Website

Apple, despite maintaining its position as the best-selling smartphone brand in China in 2023, is currently resorting to drastic measures to boost sales. An unusual promotional campaign featuring significant price reductions has surfaced on the official Chinese Apple website.

Customers using specific payment methods to purchase select Apple products can enjoy discounts of up to 800 Chinese yuan. This promotion includes the latest iPhone 15 series, Macs, AirPods, and Apple Watch.

According to an announcement on Apple China’s official website on the 15th of the month, Apple China is set to launch the “Welcome the Spring Festival Limited-Time Offer” from January 18th to January 21st. Customers who meet certain payment criteria will be eligible for varying discounts.

Taking the iPhone as an example, models like the iPhone 15 Pro, iPhone 15 Pro Max, iPhone 15, iPhone 15 Plus, iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, and iPhone 13 are all part of this promotion, with potential savings of up to 500 Chinese yuan.

For those interested in purchasing the 13-inch or 15-inch MacBook Air (M2), or the 13-inch MacBook Air (M1), the discounts can reach up to 800 Chinese yuan. Other products such as the iPad series, Apple Watch SE, AirPods, and Apple Pencil-related models are also covered under this special offer.

It’s worth noting that this move by Apple is quite unusual, as they rarely introduce such significant price reductions for new products in the same year. For instance, during last year’s Chinese New Year event, only the previous generation models, iPhone 13 and iPhone 13 mini, were included in the promotion.

This is seen as Apple’s effort to boost sales in response to increasing competition, particularly from Huawei, which made a comeback in 2023 with flagship smartphones dominating the high-end Chinese smartphone market.

As Huawei plans to expand its market share in the high-end flagship category this year, targeting the domestic demand in China, coupled with geopolitical factors, this could directly compete with Apple and potentially exert significant pressure on Apple’s production performance in the this year.

Recent reports from Jefferies analysts cited by Bloomberg highlight the impact of the Huawei Mate 60 Pro’s presence and the Chinese government’s ban on iPhones for officials. It is estimated that the sales volume of Apple’s latest products in China in 2024 could decline significantly by 30% compared to the previous year, potentially resulting in a double-digit decline in sales for the entire year.

(Image: Apple)

Please note that this article cites information from Bloomberg

[News] Huawei Hisilicon Kirin 5G Platform Rumored to Make a Full Comeback

According to a report from IJIWEI, there are recent indications that Huawei’s P70 series and smartphones with smaller foldable screens are set to be launched in the first half of this year, with the Kirin 5G chip making a comprehensive return.

Citing information from a blogger, Huawei’s return to the top spot in China’s market in the first week of 2024 is attributed to the outstanding performance of the Nova 12 series. In addition to this success, the first half of this year will witness the release of new models such as the P70 series flagship for imaging and compact foldable screen devices. The Kirin 5G platform is expected to make a full comeback.

In the first half of 2024, Huawei plans to unveil the P70 series and devices with smaller foldable screens, all powered by the Kirin 5G platform. It is reported that the P70 series will feature the Kirin 9010 chip. Looking at Huawei’s recent releases, the Kirin 5G platform is set to cover a broad spectrum, including the Mate series, P series, and nova series, among other mid-to-high-end product lines.

Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo from TF International Securities revealed that Huawei’s smartphone shipments are expected to reach 60 million units in 2024, making it the fastest-growing brand in the industry. Kuo also mentioned that due to Huawei adopting the new Kirin 5G platform, Qualcomm’s System-on-Chip (SoC) shipments to Chinese smartphone brands are anticipated to decrease by 50-60 million units in 2024 compared to 2023.

(Image: Huawei)

Please note that this article cites information from IJIWEI

[News] Market Rumors Suggest Apple Vision Pro Stock Limited to 60-80K Units, Expected to Quickly Sell Out Post-Launch

Apple CEO Tim Cook recently made the official announcement that the company’s inaugural spatial computing product, Vision Pro, is set to go on sale on February 2nd in the United States. According to a report by TechNews, due to the limited preparation of Vision Pro units, with an estimated quantity of only 60,000 to 80,000, there is a high likelihood that the product will sell out on the first day of its release.

TechNews cites the latest analysis from China’s TF Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who recently posted on X. According to Kuo, Apple has prepared only about 60,000 to 80,000 units of the Vision Pro before its launch, and due to the limited quantity, it is expected to quickly sell out once it hits the market.

Kuo also notes that despite questions about Apple’s lack of clear positioning and key features for the Vision Pro, as well as its relatively high price, the company is likely to sell out rapidly based on its groundbreaking technological innovations, creating a user experience that includes the illusion of mind-controlled interfaces. This, coupled with Apple’s strong core user base and a significant number of heavy users, should result in a swift sellout after the product’s release.

There are rumors suggesting that even though online ordering is possible, users may need to adjust the head circumference size, and Apple may prefer customers to try fitting it in person, which could lead to some consumers adopting a wait-and-see approach.

However, a user on the X platform, Aaron @aaronp613, discovered an encoding set as ‘ You will be able to use the Apple Store app to scan your face to pick the right size,’ indicating that users who are unable to visit stores for fitting may use the Apple Store app to scan their faces and order the correct Vision Pro size. Vision Pro requires a proper fit for functionality, involving a tight seal and correct headgear.

Apple has also introduced the Head Measure and Fit app to help developers test Vision Pro and determine the correct product size. Similar functionality may be built into the Apple Store app.

According to the latest data from TrendForce, global shipments of Apple Vision Pro are expected to reach 500,000 units in 2024.

(Image: Apple)

Please note that this article cites information from TechNews
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