Category Archives: Mobile and Cloud

China's JD To Set Up Two JVs With Central Group In Thailand

JD Group, JD Finance, Thailand’s leading retailer Central Group, and Provident Capital together announced that they would set up two joint ventures in Thailand to provide e-commerce service and fintech services with total investments of USD500 million.

According to the agreement, Central Group will provide half of the funds; while JD Group, JD Finance, and JD’s Indonesian e-commerce business strategic cooperating partner Provident Capital will provide the other half.

JD will provide extensive professional skill support to the e-commerce joint venture, covering technology, e-commerce, and logistics. JD Finance will offer related fintech experience and technologies such as artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and other industry-leading technologies.

At the same time, Central Group will use its retail resource advantages, including a physical store network, brand relationships and vendor resources, and its popular membership program “The 1 Card”, to contribute for the development of the two joint ventures. In addition, Central Group will open several flagship stores on the platform of the e-commerce joint venture to introduce its department store, major retail chain stores, and its owned or operated brands.

Liu Qiangdong, chairman and chief executive officer of JD Group, said that Thailand has a large population and developed infrastructure, including a strong national logistics network, which represents huge potential for the development of e-commerce and fintech. By cooperating with a strong retail group like Central Group, JD will gain a huge competitive advantage in its expansion in Southeast Asia.

Tos Chirathivat, chief executive officer of Central Group, said that JD Group achieved huge successes in the Chinese e-commerce market and it is the best choice for an e-commerce partner. With the growing of mobile Internet users and improving of customer spending power, Thailand’s e-commerce will soon have an explosive development. By cooperating with JD, Central Group will seize this opportunity to become a leading e-commerce provider in Thailand.

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Foxconn Wants To Build New Factory In Nanjing

Foxconn signed an agreement with the municipal government of Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, planning to invest over CNY37.5 billion to build a new smartphone plant in the city.

Under this basic agreement, Foxconn’s new plant will not only produce smartphones, but also will include a LCD TV factory and R&D center, facility for semiconductor manufacturing equipment, and logistics center. The municipal government of Nanjing will probably provide capital and land support in infrastructure construction, but totals have not yet been made public.

Foxconn confirmed this investment plan, but did not reveal any details. The company already has a smartphone factory in Nanjing, but it is small. The construction of this new plant indicates the company’s intention to expand its production system and gain more orders from the growing Chinese smartphone brands.

Foxconn decided in February to build a new panel factory with a scale of JPY1 trillion in Guangzhou. In addition, the company also plans to build a LCD panel factory in Wisconsin, U.S., with an investment of USD10 billion.

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Chinese Used Goods Platform Cooperates With Foxconn For iPhone Recycling

Used goods trading platform Zhuanzhuan announced a strategic deal with Foxconn, aiming to promote the standardization of the trading of used phones.

Under the deal, Zhuanzhuan and Taiwan-based Foxconn will work together in phone quality inspections, supervision and guidance by assigning staff for quality inspections to promote the standardization of used phones. Financial terms of the deal were not released.

Meanwhile, for iPhones recycled in Apple’s offline retail stores, Foxconn will also begin quality checks and select those suitable for online sales to sell them via Zhuanzhuan’s platform. Foxconn is an original equipment manufacturer for Apple.

Huang Wei, chief executive officer of Zhuanzhuan, told local media that China’s used goods market has a great potential; however, the industry lacks standards and is “in chaos”. Zhuanzhuan would like to bring revolution to the industry by standardization.

In August 2017, Zhuanzhuan’s trade volume reached CNY2.48 billion, of which 31% was contributed by the second-hand mobile phone business. During the second quarter of 2017, the trading of mobile phones on Zhuanzhuan reached 2.1 million units.

Foxconn said that they decided to cooperate with Zhuanzhuan to improve the standardization within the used mobile phone industry. With the strategic cooperation, the two parties will establish a used mobile phone quality inspection system which is in line with Apple’s official standards and then sell used iPhones on Zhuanzhuan.

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DJI Offers USD30,000 Bug Bounty For App Vulnerabilities

Chinese drone maker DJI is looking for security loopholes in their flight control software and programmers who find the loopholes could gain a bug bounty up to USD30,000, which is about CNY194,000.

A programmer recently found that DJI’s mobile application can bypass the review of Apple and Google via a hot patch. Commenting on this, DJI’s spokesperson Adam Lisberg said they have updated the application and removed the errant code. He also said that they are inspecting all code to check if there is anything else they are not aware of.

DJI will reportedly offer a bug bounty up to USD30,000. In addition, the company plans to launch a new function this month, which allows users to disconnect their smartphones or tablets from the Internet while flying drones to ensure that the data will not be sent out to third parties or be capable of in-flight main-in-the-middle attacks.

Many technology companies, such as Facebook and Uber, provide similar bug bounty awards. In 2016, an Indian security researcher found a serious security loophole on Facebook and reported to the company. After confirming the loophole, Facebook offered USD15,000 to him.

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Finnish Department Store Introduces Alipay To Retail Customers

Finland’s department store Stockmann signed an agreement with ePassi, a mobile payment company in Finland, to formally introduce Alipay as a payment method in the department store.

Anna Salmi, chief customer officer of Stockmann Group, said that Alipay is not only a payment method, but also represents a method to attract Chinese tourists. This service will first available at Stockmann’s flagship store in the center of Helsinki and gradually expanded to all Stockmann department stores across Finland. They may also expand it into their department stores in Baltic countries.

Stockmann has eight large department stores in Finland, Estonia, and Latvia. Chinese tourists have become the second largest foreign consumer group for Stockmann, following Russian tourists. The opening of Alipay allows their important customers to shop in a familiar way, which is significant to them, said Salmi.

Risto Virkkala, president of ePassi, said that Stockmann is a top retailing group in Finland and its acceptance of Alipay has a milestone meaning for the expansion of Alipay in Finland and in Europe. It also has a strong promotional effect for the cooperation between ePassi and Alipay.

With 600,000 customers, ePassi is one of the largest mobile payment companies in Finland. It has been operating in this field for ten years and it claims to have had significant business and customer growth after cooperating with Alipay.

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Coolpad CEO Resigns

Chinese smartphone maker Coolpad Group announced that its chief executive officer Liu Jiangfeng has resigned and Jiang Chao, vice chairman of the board of directors of Coolpad, will take the CEO role.

According to the report published by Coolpad, Liu hopes to put more time into personal affairs and decided to resign. At the same time, Jiang has been appointed new CEO of the company. In addition, Liu will change from executive director to non-executive director of Coolpad.

In August 2016, LeEco’s founder Jia Yueting took over the role of chairman of Coolpad from Guo Deying and Jia appointed Liu, who previously worked as president of Huawei’s Honor, as CEO of Coolpad Group. With the joining of Jia and Liu, Coolpad started adjustments in management team and many former executives, including Coolpad’s former president Li Bin, former vice president Cao Jingsheng, and former vice president Xu Yibo, left the company.

In March 2017, LeEco’s chief financial officer for China Zhang Wei was appointed executive director of Coolpad Group. By then, Coolpad Group had six executive directors and only one was from the old Coolpad while the other five were all from LeEco or appointed by Jia. LeEco achieved full control of Coolpad Group.

However, with LeEco’s suffering of capital problems, Coolpad was also affected. Both LeEco and Coolpad saw consecutive decreases of share prices for multiple trading days.

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Huawei Upgrades Cloud Business To First Tier Within Organization

Huawei is elevating its cloud services business unit as a sign that it is focusing dedicated resources to the growth of cloud computing.

The China-based company published an internal notice to its employees about the organization structural adjustment, which will upgrade its cloud business unit to a first-tier unit, with more business decision-making power.

Huawei’s cloud business unit was established in April 2017 and it is led by Huawei’s IT product line president Zheng Yelai.

Prior to the adjustment, the cloud BU was a second-tier unit and belonged to the company’s product and solutions unit. However, as a first-tier unit, the cloud BU is still on a lower level than Huawei’s enterprise business group, carrier business group, and consumer business group.

The adjustment does not affect its core management. After the adjustment, the cloud BU will have its own human resources department, CTO office, strategy and business development department, and financial management department.

In addition, this BU will have separate accounting, which may appear on Huawei’s financial report for 2017.

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China's Telecom Business Revenue Up 7.7% In July 2017

China’s telecom business volume maintained a high growth rate in July 2017 and the related business revenue increased by 7.7% year-on-year, according to statistics from China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

In July 2017, China realized total telecom business volume of CNY222.4 billion, a year-on-year increase of 71.9%; and its telecom business revenue was CNY106.3 billion, a year-on-year increase of 7.7%, which was 2.8 percentage points higher than the previous month.

From January to July 2017, China’s total telecom business volume was CNY1.322 trillion, a year-on-year increase of 56.3%; and its telecom business revenue was CNY751.7 billion, a year-on-year increase of 5.9%.

At the same time, the ratio of mobile communications business revenue was at the same level of June 2017.

From January to July 2017, China’s three major telecom operators China Mobile, China Unicom, and China Telecom realized mobile communications business revenue of CNY544.4 billion, a year-on-year increase of 5%, and it accounted for 72.4% of telecom business revenue. Their fixed-line communications business revenue was CNY207.2 billion, a year-on-year increase of 8.2%, and accounted for 27.6% of telecom business revenue.

In July 2017, China’s mobile data business revenue increased by 29.3% compared with the same period of last year. Over the first seven months of 2017, China’s three major telecom operators achieved revenue of CNY115 billion for the fixed-line data and fixed-line Internet business, representing a year-on-year increase of 9.3%. Their mobile data and mobile Internet business revenue was CNY320.9 billion, a year-on-year increase of 29.3%.

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MediaTek Takes Hit As Chinese Smartphones Migrate To Qualcomm

The financial report from Taiwan-based semiconductor firm MediaTek for the second quarter of 2017 shows the company’s net profit declined over 60%.

MediaTek’s operating revenue in the second quarter of 2017 was NTD58.079 billion, which was about CNY12.912 billion and marked a year-on-year decrease of 19.9%. Its net profit was NTD2.21 billion, which was about CNY491 million and marked a year-on-year decrease of 66.5%. The company’s performance reportedly hit a new quarterly low point since its listing.

As a major IC designer focusing on smartphone chips, MediaTek’s smartphone business operating revenue only accounted for 40% of the company’s total operating revenue during the reporting period.

With Qualcomm’s enhancement in the middle- and low-end markets, MediaTek’s former major clients Oppo and Vivo have reportedly turned to Qualcomm starting at the end of 2016. This cost MediaTek many orders. Though Meizu recently used MediaTek’s HelioX30 on its PRO7 smartphone, it still cannot make up the Taiwanese company’s sales losses in the high-end market.

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Xiaomi Opens First Offline Experience Store In Northwestern China

Xiaomi’s first offline experience store in the northwestern region of China opened in Wangfujing Outlets, Hohhot, Inner Mongolia.

On the first day of the opening of this new store, it welcomed 12,000 customers and realized sales of CNY596,000.

This is the eighth store under the cooperation between Wangfujing Group and Xiaomi and it is also the first Xiaomi store that opens in Wangfujing Outlets.

With an operating area of 215 square meters, the new store includes a 125-square-meter customer experience zone, a 50-square-meter product sales zone, and a rest area. Products displayed in the store include Xiaomi’s smartphones, laptops, home appliances, and electronic product accessories.

Yang Haiyan, general manager of Hohhot Wangfujing Outlets, said that the arrival of Xiaomi further improves the brand quality of Hohhot Wangfujing Outlets and expands their category operating models. The emerging Internet electronic products will offer better shopping experience to local consumers.

So far, Wangfujing Group has become the largest commercial group partner of Xiaomi. During the first half of 2017, Xiaomi stores opened in Wangfujing achieved accumulated sales of CNY150 million and the sales expect to reach nearly CNY400 million for the entire year.

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