Smartphone maker HTC Corp (宏達電) said yesterday that it had learned from a panel supply issue between the Taiwanese company and the display unit of arch rival Samsung Electronics Co that supply chain management can be a competitive edge.
Jack Tong (董俊良), president of the company’s North Asia-Pacific region, said that when the HTC Desire was launched in the first quarter of 2010, the smartphone was using an active-matrix organic light-emitting diode (AMOLED) display supplied by Samsung.
However, once the HTC Desire was in demand by global consumers and telecom operators at the time, Samsung “strategically declined” to supply its AMOLED displays to HTC, Tong said at a tech forum in Taipei.
“We learned that key component supply can be used as a competitive weapon,” he said.
Tong said that Samsung is good at vertically integrating its supply chain and marketing, and Taiwanese brands will need to work closely with local and global manufacturing partners to come up with more innovative products.
The Ministry of Economic Affairs said in January that it hoped to develop a mobile handset industry chain in Taiwan as a way of helping local manufacturers cut costs.
The ministry said it was also seeking to persuade foreign AMOLED display technology and production equipment plants to relocate to Taiwan, but no progress has been announced so far.