Readers’ choice: The top 10 articles of 2019

Article By : EETimes Staff

Before we wrap up 2019, we went back and looked at what you, our readers, were most captivated by this year. Topping the list was Apple’s plan to begin assembling handsets in India, followed by a teardown review of Huawei's P30 Pro.

Before we wrap up 2019, we went back and looked at what you, our readers, were most captivated by this year. Topping the list was Apple’s plan to begin assembling handsets in India, followed by a teardown review of Huawei's P30 Pro .

Read on for the top 10 articles of 2019 as determined by readership.

1. India Next in iPhone Production Plan

Amid forecasts of declining iPhone shipments, Apple is looking to India to reinvigorate sales, with plans to begin assembling its high end handsets at a Foxconn plant in Tamil Nadu in the south of the country.

2.. A Teardown of Huawei's P30 Pro

In a flash sale that was reportedly over in ten seconds, Huawei today launched in China its brand new P30 and P30 Pro smartphones. Along with the launch, different technology outfits scrambled to break apart the new handsets so that they could be the first to post teardown reports.

EE Times tapped the technical expertise of System Plus Consulting (Nante, France), Yole Développement’s partner company. We asked the analysts to share their initial observations and reveal any surprises they encountered.

3. CEO Quietly Exits Wave Computing After Only 4 Months

Wave Computing, an AI startup based in Campbell, Calif., quietly swapped out its company chief in early September without a public announcement. Wave’s website now shows that Art Swift, who became Wave’s CEO last May, is already gone. It lists Sanjai Kohli as the new CEO.

4. Another Failure for Boeing

Boeing’s aerospace unit flunked another test this week when an engine on its Starliner spacecraft failed to place the unmanned spacecraft in the proper orbit to rendezvous and dock with the International Space Station.

Boeing Starliner

5. U.S.-China Crisis: Repercussions for Chip Industry

Over the last few months, eyes of the media, the voices of politicians and the minds of the business and tech communities have been trained all on Huawei and, more broadly, on China.

The world is also watching closely the current U.S.-China trade talks and awaiting a ruling on March 1, to see if Canada grants the U.S. request to extradite Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou.

Undoubtedly, the outcome of these political matters will be important. But being reactive to any immediate news item offers scant insight on big picture and the long arc of the future.

6. Apple iPhone 11 and Watch 5 Teardown

Consumers (and the media) expect to be wowed by Apple every year with the rollout of the latest iPhone and Apple Watch iterations. Apple occasionally disappoints, but not this year; Bloomberg just called iPhone 11 Pro “the world’s best phone camera,” declaring that “iPhone reclaims the title of mobile camera champion.”

It's not that we here at EE Times are unimpressed by the latest iPhone features, but if you want to see us really geek out, crack the thing open.

7. Component Shortages Set to Continue

The fortunes of the electronics supply chain can change on a dime. Following two years of severe component shortages, demand is weakening, and inventories are too high, a March study found. One global distributor describes the environment as “normalizing” but cautions there’s still a lot of instability in the 2019 forecast.

8. Intel Wants Lisa Su?

During the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas last week, we picked up an intriguing rumor circulating among a few C-Level executives that Intel Corp. is pondering the acquisition of AMD.

Given Intel’s acrimonious history vs. AMD in the CPU market, common sense says this is an unlikely marriage. Most analysts we reached dismissed it outright.

9. Tsinghua Poaches Talent to Aid China's Faltering DRAM Industry

China’s Tsinghua Unigroup, the state-owned holding company that controls most of the nation’s semiconductor assets, may snatch a co-CEO from Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp. (SMIC) to revive a plan to build a domestic DRAM industry.

According to media reports and to people interviewed by EE Times, Tsinghua aims to hire SMIC Co-CEO Haijun Zhao to head up a new DRAM company that would combine China’s fledgling memory makers, which are struggling to survive. Despite China’s multi-billion investment to build a domestic memory industry, it lacks much of the key intellectual property needed to compete in the business.

10. TSMC Adds a N5P process

TSMC added a N5P process and more details on advanced packages to its road map for squeezing advances from silicon at an annual event here.

At the bleeding edge, picking a path forward among expanding 7, 7+, 6, 5 and 5+ options is increasingly complex. “The good news is we continue to see scaling for the foreseeable future,” Yuh-Jier Mii, a senor vice president for technology development for TSMC told an audience of about 2,000 attendees.

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