Chimei Innolux Corp (奇美電子) yesterday signed an agreement with Hitachi Display Ltd to supply high-end flat panels used in tablet devices such as Apple Inc’s iPad, using the Japanese company’s technology.
Based on the agreement, Chimei will be licensed by Hitachi to manufacture and supply high-end LCD panels based on IPS technology to the Japanese company and Chimei’s major customers from next year.
The deal would broaden Chimei’s IPS product line-up, according to a company statement released yesterday. In the strategic alliance, both sides would benefit from the growing demand for IPS panels because of rising demand for netbook laptops and tablet PCs.
Shipments of netbooks and tablet PCs are expected to grow to 86 million units with a composite annual growth rate of 139 percent during the period from last year to 2015, according to market researcher DisplaySearch’s forecast.
IPS is currently one of the most suitable display technologies for such devices because of its better visibility from any viewing angle, DisplaySearch said.
Separately, E Ink Holding Inc (元太科技), the world’s biggest e-paper display supplier, yesterday unveiled its latest e-paper displays, primarily for electronic readers with enhanced resolution, allowing the display to have an appearance similar to paper used in print publication.
The US online bookstore giant Amazon.com has used E Ink’s latest e-paper display, called Pearl, for its new-generation Kindle e-reader series, dubbed Kindle DX. E Ink said the new e-paper display has a 50 percent higher contrast ratio than existing e-paper displays.
The Hsinchu-based E Ink, which was originally named Prime View International Co Ltd, sells e-paper displays using E Ink Corp’s electronic paper technology. E Ink acquired E Ink Corp last year.
“With features such as its thin size, light weight and low power consumption, E Ink’s Pearl displays can be widely used in e-readers, electronic reference books and electronic magazines in the future, replacing traditional paper, or liquid crystal displays,” E Ink Corp chairman Felix Ho (何奕達) said in a company statement yesterday.
The new product targets the fast-growing e-reader market and budding electronic magazine and electronic newspaper businesses, the company said.
This year, global shipments of e-readers are expected to amount to US$837 million and could grow by 44 percent to US$1.2 billion next year, E Ink said, citing DisplaySearch’s forecast.
The Austin, Texas-based research firm said E Ink’s new e-paper display technology would help the company safeguard its leadership in the market.
Shares of E Ink Holding rose 1.9 percent to NT$40.3 yesterday, ending five straight days of losses, while Chimei shares dropped for the fifth trading session in a row to end at NT$32.65.
NOT ALL GOOD: Analysts warned that other data for last month might be less rosy due to the virus and analysts expect the PMI to contract again next month Chinese factory activity saw surprise growth last month as businesses went back to work following a lengthy shutdown, but analysts said that the economy faces a challenging recovery as external demand has been devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic, while the World Bank said that growth could screech to a halt. China is slowly returning to life after months of tough restrictions aimed at containing the virus, which put millions of people into virtual house arrest and brought economic activity to a near standstill. The strict measures saw a closely watched gauge of manufacturing plunge to its lowest level on record in February,
The output of the global smartphone industry this year is to contract by 7.8 percent on an annual basis as the COVID-19 pandemic ushers in a global recession, Taipei-based market researcher TrendForce Corp (集邦科技) said in a report on Monday. The global production of smartphones is expected to fall to 1.29 billion units, as the pandemic dampens demand for consumer electronics, leading to a decline in shipments across Europe and North America, TrendForce said. With consumers delaying smartphone purchases and thereby lengthening the device replacement cycle, overall prices would suffer a setback that is expected to negatively affect the profitability of smartphone
ELECTRONICS Lite-On delays sale of unit Lite-On Technology Corp (光寶科技) yesterday said it would postpone the sale of its solid-state drives (SSD) business to Kioxia Holdings Corp, formerly known as Toshiba Memory Holdings Corp, due to disruptions amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Last year, the Taiwan-based electronics components supplier struck the deal with the Japanese firm, agreeing to sell the unit for US$165 million. Citing unfinished integration work due to the pandemic, Lite-On has deferred today’s closing date until further notice, adding that the delay would not have a negative effect on the unit’s operations. AUTO PARTS Hiroca approves dividend Automotive interior parts supplier Hiroca
ALL ABOUT STRATEGY: The company is optimistic, saying that its gross margin should increase year-on-year, but it is scaling back on its plans to expand capacity Quang Viet Enterprise Co (QVE, 廣越), which makes down jackets and garments for sportswear and outdoor brands including Adidas AG, yesterday said that revenue might drop 5 to 10 percent annually this year as some customers trimmed orders in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. That would mark its first revenue decline since 2016. Quang Viet posted record-high revenue of NT$16.26 billion (US$537.45 million) last year, up 22 percent from 2018. Down jackets made up 40 percent of it revenue last year. North Face Inc and Patagonia Inc are this year likely to reduce orders by 20 to 30 percent from a