Supply chain
Digitimes Research: China players becoming strong threat to first-tier brand vendors
Jim Hsiao, DIGITIMES Research, Taipei

Observing vendors' showcases at CES 2015, Digitimes Research believes first-tier notebook brand vendors' 2-in-1 devices are expected face fierce price competition from China's white-box products as well as other mobile devices including notebooks, tablets and smartphones. Meanwhile, China-based smartphone vendors are also expected to grow strong in overseas markets.

Asustek Computer showcased three new Transformer Book Chi series 2-in-1 devices at the show with improved performance and attractive industrial designs, hoping to raise consumers' acceptance over their high prices.

However, with most Windows-based 2-in-1 devices still being promoted for their low prices and high price/performance ratios, attracting consumers to purchase its mid-range/high-end 2-in-1 devices will be the major challenge for Asustek in 2015.

China white-box vendors' Windows-based 2-in-1 devices, which are developed with help from Intel and Microsoft's China Technology Ecosystem (CTE) supply chain, are already able to achieve a price point more than US$100 cheaper than 2-in-1 products from first-tier brand vendors and are expected to create pressure for brand vendors and Taiwan-based ODMs, Digitimes Research analyzed.

In addition to Lenovo, the fourth-largest smartphone vendor in China, TCL, has also turned aggressive about tablet development since the second half of 2014 and unveiled a 10-inch 64-bit tablet at CES 2015.

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