Bits + chips
Chip demand from Android phone makers picking up
Cage Chao, Taipei; Steve Shen, DIGITIMES
Tuesday 17 April 2018

China-based handset brands have ramped up their chip orders since March with the demand momentum likely to continue into early May, according to sources from Taiwan's IC suppliers.

A number of factors including sluggish second-quarter revenue outlook for makers in Apple's supply chain, lower-than-expected inventory build-ups for current iPhone devices and the absence of new iPhone devices until the end of the third quarter have prompted vendors including Huawei, Oppo, Vivo, Xiaomi Technology and Meizu to step up purchases of IC parts, said the sources.

Having seen its March revenues hit a 4-month high, MediaTek claimed that the issue of high inventory levels that had been plaguing the handset supply chain in China previously has been resolved.

TDDI (touch and display driver integration) chip solution provider FocalTech Systems also saw its March revenues reach a record high, signaling a rebound of chip orders from China's smartphone players, stated the sources.

Moreover, China's smartphone vendors are also taking the opportunity to further improve the price/performance ratios of their models in order to ramp up market share, said the sources, noting that some vendors are now reconsidering using 3D sensors for new models to be launched in the second half of the year.

However, granted that China's smartphone market has lost much of its growth momentum, it remains to be seen whether the current upsurge in IC procurements will continue after the Labor Day holidays in May, said the sources.

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