Mobile + telecom
Highlights of the day: Chinese vendors focus on affordable 5G smartphones

The handset market has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic, but China is banking on 5G smartphones to help reboot its economy. Chinese vendors are expected to roll out more inexpensive 5G smartphones to stimulate demand. For its 5G infrastructure deployments, China is relying more on Taiwan's IC design houses for chip support in line with the country's bid to cut reliance on US supplies. For Apple, its 5G iPhone may come later than expected because of the pandemic; so may its new AirPods Pro.

Affordable sub-6 GHz 5G phones to hit market in 2H20: China-based handset makers have been keen on developing 5G phones supporting sub-6GHz technology, with prospects to see some brands roll out 5G models priced below CNY3,000 (US$424) in the second half of 2020, according to industry observers.

Taiwan IC firms see orders for 5G infrastructure pull in from China: Taiwan-based IC design houses have landed a pull-in of orders for 5G base-station and customer-premise equipment (CPE) from China, according to sources at Taiwan's IC distributors.

Apple likely to defer new AirPods Pro launch: Apple may have to defer the launch of its new AirPods Pro to the second half of 2020 or even 2021, according to sources at related suppliers.

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