Taiwan-based voice coil motor (VCM) suppliers expect their shipments to gain momentum in second-half 2021, having already kicked off recently the related shipments for the next-generation iPhone devices slated for the launch in the latter half of 2021.
5G subscriptions are growing at a rate of about one million per day. 5G is expected to become the fastest adopted mobile generation in history, compared to 4G LTE. It is estimated that by the end of 2021, 5G subscriptions will reach 580 million, according to the Ericsson Mobility Report 2021. However, the penetration rate of 5G in Asia still varies greatly from country to country and now many countries are aiming to win in this 5G rollout competition.
India's telecom operator Bharti Airtel is working with Intel for 5G networks, while the local EV and car electronics makets are expanding fast.
Demand from the car sector has been strong, and foundry houses are stepping up efforts to rolling out more automotive chips. Apple's manufacturing partners are seeing COVID-induced disruptions to their production in Vietnam, and will have to move poduction of new-gen AirPods to China. And in China, construction of 5G base stations is slowing down this year.
Taiwan-based optical component suppliers are likely to brace for lower-than-expected sales in the third quarter of 2021 due to the low order visibility for their 5G optical components from telecom supply chain in China, according to industry sources.
Smartphone-use lens module maker Genius Electronic Optical (GSEO), based on orders received, expects current full utilization of production capacity to continue until the beginning of the fourth quarter of 2021, according to company chairman Jones Chen.
Chip shortage gas been serious, but Apple and carmakers are both asking for more ICs, the former looking to secure supply for its upcoming devices and the latter to prevent dirsuptions to their productions. Chinese IC designers are seeking more advanced manufacturing support from TSMC for their AI and HPC chips. Taiwan-based server makers are keen on expanding production capacity to meet strong demand.
Apple has stepped up its chip purchases for the upcoming iPhones, while first-tier automotive component vendors in the supply chains of carmakers in Japan are also vying for more available ICs, according to industry sources.
Brand vendors of 5G smartphones have started building component inventory for their new models for the second half of 2021, but prices of AP solutions are facing difficulties to increase, despite the ongoing rising quotes for ICs that are in shortages, because of fierce competition among suppliers, according to sources from the upstream supply chain.
Wistron, which has qualified for Production Linked Incentives (PLI) from the Indian government, is focusing its operation in India on stability over volume, according to company sources.