Taiwan and China should work together to develop next-generation mobile telecommunication technology standards and enhance their international competitiveness, MediaTek Inc (聯發科) and China Mobile Ltd said yesterday.
The rise of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets has increased demand for mobile data delivery and pushed Taiwan and China to accelerate the approval of the use of fourth-generation long term evolution (4G LTE) and time-division long term evolution (TD LTE) telecom networks.
Next month, the government is to allow seven firms, including Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信), Taiwan Mobile Co (台灣大哥大), Far EasTone Telecommunications Co Ltd (遠傳電信) and Asia-Pacific Telecom (亞太電信), to bid for spectrum that can be used to provide 4G LTE mobile communication services, while the Chinese government plans to license the TD LTE spectrum to Chinese telecoms by the end of the year.
Given that Taiwan and China have different market sizes and sectors, Taiwanese mobile device component makers should collaborate with Chinese firms to expand their business in the world’s second-largest economy, Aaron Chang (章維力), head of MediaTek’s China operations, told a forum.
Chang said China’s smartphone and tablet supply chains are more comprehensive, adding that Chinese electronics makers could collaborate with Taiwanese firms to learn cutting-edge technologies that have been developed by Taiwanese talent, as well as learn about company management and global business strategies.
“Over the past 10 years, many Taiwanese and Chinese firms have entered into partnerships to produce personal computers and mobile devices,” Chang said.
“As MediaTek is capable of designing chips used for TD LTE-supported smartphones, Chinese mobile device makers, if they work with more firms like MediaTek, will be able to develop new products more efficiently and grow their businesses more quickly,” he added.
At an annual forum attended by 300 Taiwanese and Chinese telecoms in Greater Taichung yesterday, Chang said that MediaTek created more than 300 billion yuan (US$48.6 billion) in market value for China’s smartphone market last year.
As a smartphone and tablet chip designer and manufacturer, MediaTek supplied chip products to more than 200 direct clients based in China last year, Chang said.
He also announced MediaTek’s plans to launch new products, which will be based on 28-nano meter processing technologies by the end of the year.
In order to expand its market share in the 4G LTE-powered mobile device market, the Taipei-based company plans to roll out a new “LTE-Advanced” chip product solution as soon as 2015, he added.
Meanwhile, China Mobile deputy chief executive officer Lee Cheng-mao (李正茂) told the forum that China’s TD LTE telecom network was only slightly different from Taiwan’s 4G LTE telecom network.
“With both Taiwan and China finally moving toward approving the use of LTE telecom spectrum, the two countries can together create the world’s largest mobile telecommunications market,” Lee said.
“Taiwan and China might be able to develop a fifth-generation telecom network, which will not only benefit telecoms, but also strengthen other sectors,” he added.
Currently, China Mobile has installed TD LTE equipment at more than 50,000 sites in China, Lee said, adding that the company has attracted more than 3 million TD LTE-supported mobile device users as its subscribers during the trial period.
Asked if the company plans to expand its business this year, Lee told reporters China Mobile aims to double its smartphone shipments to 120 million units this year.
He added that China Mobile did not rule out the possibility of collaborating with Hon Hai Group (鴻海集團), also known as Foxconn Technology Group (富士康科技集團), to manufacture its own brand of smartphones.
Vice Minister of Economic Affairs Woody Duh (杜紫軍) and Chinese Deputy Minister of Industrial and Information Technology Liu Lihua (劉利華) yesterday delivered the opening remarks at the forum.
Several representatives from local telecoms also participated in the forum, including Joseph Kuo (郭逸樵), managing director of the value-added services division at Chunghwa Telecom’s mobile business group; Charlene Hung (洪小玲), deputy executive of Far EasTone’s e-commerce department; and Jeff Ku (谷元宏), deputy chief operating officer of Taiwan Mobile’s consumer business group.