Amazon says that it has changed the working conditions in a Chinese factory that violated labor laws

A recent article published by the Guardian detailed a number of labor violations committed by a Foxconn factory in Hengyang, China that builds Echo smart speakers and Kindle e-Readers. In March, over 40% of employees in the factory were temporary “dispatch workers” who get paid more than permanent workers, but have no job security and do not qualify for sick pay or holiday pay. And when business slows, they can be fired without receiving any pay at all. A law passed in 2014 by the Chinese government states that only 10% of a factory’s employees are allowed to be “dispatch workers.”
And …


Qualcomm to meet Chinese regulators in attempt to get last approval needed for NXP purchase

Lost in the soap opera drama surrounding ZTE and the broader issues surrounding the trade war with China, is Qualcomm’s $44 billion offer to buy NXP Semiconductors. Originally announced in October 2016, Qualcomm has received regulatory approval from eight of the nine countries required; the lone holdout is China. And the latter is reportedly not going to sign off on the transaction without some progress being made on its trade talks with U.S. negotiators.
Looking to generate some movement on the issue, Qualcomm is meeting with Chinese antitrust regulators in Beijing …

Chinese panel suppliers now offer near bezel-less panels for high-end to low-end handsets

The China Information Technology Expo recently came to an end, and based on the panels on display by Chinese manufacturers, it seems that all of these firms are working on the so-called modern look. What exactly does that mean? It means that these companies are now rolling out all-screen panels with an aspect ratio of 18:9. From entry-level models sporting a WVGA resolution display (400 x 840) to high-end smartphones, these companies producing glass panels in China are making the change from the 16:9 ratio that was once widely used. The near bezel-less look is driving the move to the taller …

Chinese smartphone shipments continue to fall, decline 34% from last quarter

Last week, we told you that global smartphone shipments dropped 2.9% in the first quarter led by a decline in Chinese smartphone shipments. While we knew that the number of shipments in China declined to less than 100 million units for the first time since Q3 of 2013, we now have a better handle on the weakness in that country. According to a fresh report published on Friday, the number of smartphones shipped in China during the first quarter of 2018 tallied less than 90 million units.

Some of the decline can be blamed on the Chinese Lunar New Year. The holiday cut into smartphone production. …

BlackBerry KEYone sequel "Athena" appears on Chinese regulator's site with dual cameras on back

Earlier this month, we showed you some renders allegedly revealing the look of the BlackBerry KEYone sequel codenamed “Athena.” At first glance, this phone appears to be very similar to the current model. But a closer look reveals sharper squared-off corners on top, an extra textured button on the side, and a dual-camera setup on back. Today, the “Athena” was spotted on the site of China’s telecommunications regulator TENAA. This is the agency, similar to the FCC in the states, that must approve all handsets used in the country.

The TENAA certification includes four pictures of the device …

Top Chinese phone manufacturers are keeping their chip suppliers busy

Asian based chip makers, like MediaTek, are benefiting from a surge in demand for mobile chipsets by Chinese smartphone manufacturers. MediaTek’s revenues for March rose 58.2% from February to NT$20.11 billion ($688.1 million USD). Industry sources say that handset producers like Huawei, Oppo, Vivo and Xiaomi have increased the size of their chip orders as they stock up prior to the production and release of new models.

The market share of the four aforementioned Chinese phone manufacturers combine to top 70% in their home country. Toss in the overseas presence that all four are trying to …

Trump's tariffs on Chinese imports could raise Apple iPhone prices in the U.S.

If you live in the U.S. and end up having to pay much more for your next Apple iPhone, you might put the blame squarely on President Donald J. Trump. The president went against the advice of his rapidly changing staff (can’t tell the players without a scorecard) and announced tariffs against imports from China. A 25% tariff will be added to as much as $50 billion worth of goods from the country. The majority of products affected are said to be from the high-tech sector.

While many consider the Apple iPhone to be as American as Apple Pie, the truth is that the handset is designed …

Chinese manufacturer Wistron might've used unauthorized parts in iPhone production

The second largest iPhone 8 Plus manufacturer in the world, Wistron, has been accused of using unauthorized parts in its production process. As a result, the device production might’ve been halted for two weeks.

Unauthorized waterproofing parts have been reportedly used by Wistron in the production process of the iPhone 8 Plus without warning Apple. Rumors have it that Wistron has penalized some of its high-level executives as a way to regain Apple’s trust. 
Wistron has its own position on the issue stating that the production process hasn’t been …

Broadcom says that Qualcomm has connections with Chinese companies and the country's government

Earlier this week, we told you that the the U.S. Treasury’s Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) took the extraordinary step of commenting on Broadcom’s proposed purchase of Qualcomm, even though the deal had not yet been agreed to. CFIUS usually makes its pronouncements after both parties to a merger have signed on the dotted line. With its release sounding more like a research report issued by a securities firm, CFIUS mentioned its concerns about Broadcom’s reputation as a cost cutter when it comes to R&D budgets, and its position as a foreign company.

While …

Apple to store Chinese iCloud accounts and keep cryptography keys in China starting February 28th

A local law in China is forcing Apple to host Chinese users’ iCloud accounts in a data center inside China starting on February 28th. Besides keeping these accounts domestically in China, Apple will also be storing in the country the cryptographic keys needed to unlock them. Previously, both the accounts and the keys were held in the U.S., which meant that Chinese authorities needing to unlock a Chinese iCloud account had to go through the U.S. legal system.

Once these accounts and the keys start to be held in China on February 28th, the Chinese government and law enforcement will be able …