Record fine for manufacturers in decade-long cartel
The European Commission has fined seven electronics manufacturers 1.47 billion euro ($1.92 billion) for price fixing, in what has been described as "textbook cartels". Philips, LG, Samsung, and others were fined for their parts in cathode ray tube (CRT) price cartels for televisions and computer monitors, that lasted between 1996 and 2006.
Suppliers say 2.4m iPad 2 delivered in March
Apple may have had very aggressive launch shipments of the iPad 2 despite the shortages, part suppliers said Wednesday. About 2.4 million to 2.6 million of the tablets are believed to have shipped just in March. The rate should accelerate faster still, Digitimes said, and would hit four million to 4.3 million per month in each spring month to lead to at least 12 million iPad 2s in the season.
EU announces fines for long-running LCD cartel
The European Commission on Wednesday announced several key decisions, one of which involves fining six LCD makers for being involved in a price-fixing cartel between October 2001 and February 2006. The fines amount to the equivalent of $856 million (649 million euros) and need to be paid by Korea's Samsung and LG as well as Taiwan's AU Optronics, Chimei InnoLux, Chunghwa Picture Tubes and HannStar. While the companies are based outside of Europe, the cartel's actions affected the price of products sold in Europe.
EU watchdog to sue LG, four more for LCD cartel
LG Display and AU Optronics are two of five companies that are facing fines from European Union regulators over allegedly colluding on fixing the prices of LCD displays in consumer devices, four sources said in a recent report. One of the unnamed sources said the European Commission will announce the fines on December 8. While the EU regulator didn't name the companies, LG Display and AU and Chi Mei Optoelectronics confirmed these charges themselves.
Report hints at Google TV offering
Taiwan-based Chunghwa Telecom is reportedly collaborating with Intel to develop "smart TV" products and services, along with cloud computing technology and applications, according to a Commercial Times report. Chunghwa chairman Lu Shyue-ching is said to be talking directly with Intel head Paul Otellini.
Already in talks with Apple, says chairman
Chunghwa Telecom is currently looking at getting the iPad into Taiwan, according to the carrier's chairman, Lu Shyue-ching. Speaking with Reuters at the Computex PC expo, Shyue-ching says his company is "still talking" to Apple, and working "actively" at getting sales started. There is indeed a local demand for pure media consumption devices like the iPad, the chairman argues.
nuvifone M10 coming with Windows Mobile 6.5.3
Garmin-ASUS on Friday released the Windows 6.5.3-powered M10 smartphone in Taiwan. The company's third GPS phone, it's powered by a Qualcomm 600MHz chip and is the first to use Windows Mobile 6.5.3, although it uses a resistive touchscreen rather than the capacitive that 6.5.3 enables. Internet Explorer is also said to be smoother in transitions in touch gestures and is quicker overall.
Chunghwa shows 21.5-inch projected touchscreen
Taiwan's Chunghwa Picture Tubes (CPT) showed off what it is calling the largest projected capacitive touch panel with its 21.5-inch display. The device is currently undergoing testing by clients and the company has already started shipping 10.1-inch projective capacitive touch panels and 3D panels.
Nokia sues LCD makers for price fixing
The world's largest cellphone maker, Nokia, is suing 11 manufacturers of LCD displays for allegedly colluding on fixing the prices of liquid crystal displays, according to a Tuesday WSJ report (subscription required). In the suit, filed on November 25th in San Francisco, Nokia maintains the companies raised the prices of LCDs above what they would have been in a competitive market, in a period ranging from January 1st, 1996, to December 11th, 2006. Nokia purchased these overpriced LCDs for its smartphones.
LCD makers price fixing
The European Union's antitrust regulators have charged Philips Electronics, LG Display and a number of smaller, unnamed LCD makers with corroborating on fixing the price of LCD monitors, Philips announced on Monday. According to a Monday report, the EU antitrust regulators began their investigation in 2006, along with their US counterparts, and has now concluded that the involved firms knowingly kept pricing high. Philips said it would vigorously fight the accusation and claimed that it sold all of its shares in LG Display in March, eliminating possible incentives to illegally collaborate in the future.
Taiwanese iPhone unlocked
Buyers of the Taiwanese iPhone will find it unlocked, reports say. Although the phone's official carrier in the country -- Chunghwa Telecom -- has in the past insisted that the phone would only work on its network, in practice, the new iPhone will accept SIM cards from other carriers' networks without any hardware or software hacks. The only tradeoff, users say, is that Chunghwa's Hami services become inaccessible.
Hami for Taiwanese iPhone
A new service package announced for the Taiwanese iPhone may suggest that Apple is allowing more freedom when it comes to carrier personalization. Local carrier Chunghwa Telecom has revealed the existence of Hami, a set of free services intended specifically for iPhone owners. People will have access to 11 services in total, including special news, weather and stock market trackers, as well as audio, video and images custom-produced solely for Hami. It is unclear whether Hami will be delivered via the web or as a custom app download.
Taiwanese iPhone in Dec.
The iPhone should launch in Taiwan sometime next month, carrier Chunghwa Telecom has announced. The company says it should be the phone's exclusive carrier on the island for the foreseeable future, and has set a rough timeframe of December 2008. No subscription plans have been announced, nor has Chunghwa provided an estimate of phone prices. The carrier will however have to compete with gray-market phones from New Zealand, Hong Kong and even the US, which have been selling for the equivalent of $667 or more.
LG, others pay $585M fine
The US Department of Justice on Wednesday announced that LG Display, Sharp Corp. and Chunghwa Picture Tubes Ltd. plead guilty to criminal accusations of conspiring to fix prices in the sale of LCD panels and agreed to collectively pay $585 million in fines. LG will pay the majority of that amount, or $400 million, which is the second-highest criminal fine the DoJ's Antitrust Division has ever imposed. The charges were filed on Wednesday in the US District Court in San Francisco, with the three companies agreeing to cooperate with the investigation.
18-inch LCD Panels
LCD maker Chunghwa Picture Tubes today revealed that a new panel is in the works that could affect the designs of both desktop and notebook displays. Measuring 18.4 inches, the display will sit between 17- and 19-inch LCDs in cost but will adopt a wider, HDTV-like 1366x768 resolution versus the taller pictures of its smaller and larger models. The screen will be designed for distance viewing and will boast a relatively high 1,000:1 contrast ratio and 5ms pixel response time, Chunghwa claims.