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Company News >> The body of the glass industry is rampant
At the Apple WWDC18 World Developers Conference on June 4th, Apple officially released the iOS 12 operating system, added USDZ's document format, AR measurement tool (Measure) APP, ARKit 2.0, etc., and Siri upgraded the system. In the shortcut key skills, but also improves the performance of the old equipment. Performance acceleration and focus on AR became the theme of this conference.
Apple began to pay more attention to the software behind, the hardware approached standardization and mediocrity, and China's apple supply chain companies benefited
Among them, Apple said that AR is a disruptive technology that allows users to experience the real world in a whole new way, change people's work and lifestyle, and iOS 12 will continue this, bringing a new AR sharing experience and a long-term connection with specific locations. Settings, object detection, and image tracking. According to Apple, iOS is the world's largest AR platform with hundreds of millions of devices that support the AR experience.
iOS 12 supports experience of AR on different system platforms. Apple and Pixar team worked closely together to create an AR file format called USDZ. The web version is also supported. It helps users customize the appearance of items directly on Safari. Or move it to reality to see the actual size. Apple also provides developers with 3D development tools for partners to create USDZ files. Adobe, Autodesk and other companies will cooperate with Apple and can create AR content directly through its professional tools such as Adobe Cloud Suite, access, and promote at all. The iOS platform shares USDZ files to experience AR.
In addition, Apple also introduced ARKit 2, a platform that allows developers to integrate AR sharing experiences, persistent AR experiences tied to specific locations, object detection, and image tracking to make AR applications more dynamic. Live Apple demonstrates how LEGO LEGO AR City leverages ARKit 2 features, including shared experiences, persistent AR, and 3D object detection, to bring LEGO's creations and characters to life
At the conference, Apple only updated its four major systems, including iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS. Unlike the occasional release of some hardware products, the conference did not release any new hardware products, including everyone’s expectations. For a long time iPhoneSE new models.
Apple dilutes the hardware update on this node, indicating that Apple is very confident about its own iPhoneX replacement hardware design. Basically, it has officially standardized this generation of model design as a template design for the subsequent cycle. This may mean that Apple's innovation in the future will not have too many new hardware features, only regular upgrades.
This is also the case, Apple's market value has instead increased to a historical high, close to trillion market value of US dollars. The global share price of Apple's supply chain companies also rose. China's domestic Apple supply chain companies also rose before the market.
As the industry predicts that there will be no major changes in Apple’s innovation at the hardware level, Apple will further pursue the cost-effectiveness of hardware to drive down the cost of the supply chain, gain greater profit margins, and allow Apple to sell at a lower price. The price will attract more consumers and further expand their own user base and service value-added business income. Affected by these fundamental reasons, Apple suppliers in the supply chain that can provide cheaper products are more optimistic about the industry.
Apple's hardware innovation in the appearance of structural components on the wheel to the glass body
In yesterday’s article, Li Xing mentioned that Apple’s body design began with the use of a desktop computer’s injection molding machine case and slowly switched to the “no mold design concept” that draws on the iPod music player, and in fact Apple is in the notebook. The "No Mold Design Concept" model was adopted on the computer even before the iPhone, and achieved unprecedented success. It quickly opened up inventory levels with competitors and gained the largest market profit rate.
After adopting the "no mold design concept" model of the iPhone, Apple first replaced the mobile phone body materials with aluminum materials and stainless steel materials that are the same as the iPod music players and Apple laptops, and automated processing through CNC machine tools. And the processing data is collected, and the supply of upstream materials in the supply chain is monopolized in the market with lower futures prices.
However, with the development of telecommunication technology, the communication network transmission technology has been upgraded from 3G and 4G to the current 5G. In addition, Apple has refocused on the NFC function and added wireless charging, multi-standard GPS, and new versions of WIFI and Bluetooth transmission technologies. In the future, perhaps the need for certain political aspects, adding FM signal transmission, etc., so Apple had to adjust the body structure of the phone.
In Apple’s choice of body materials to adapt to various signal conversion efficiencies, sapphire, ceramics, liquid metal, glass, and ancient plastics have all been used in Apple’s trials, and some of them continue to be used. In order to stimulate the industry to find out more efficient, lower-cost new production process.
However, in the final selection of body materials, Apple still has a special preference for Corning glass materials, which are common with large modules. The first is that the industrial chain of Corning Glass has been matured by Apple. No matter the production scale, production efficiency, or production cost, it has reached the level that Apple wants. The second is to use the same materials and supply chain to produce Apple rear cover, Apple can save a lot of development costs and supply chain management costs.
Of course, other kinds of non-metallic materials such as sapphire, ceramics, plastics, and liquid metals that can achieve no screen defects, high processing costs for sapphire and ceramics, low yields, and slow production schedules can cause Apple to suffer. In the end, plastics and liquid metals have to go back to the original design molds, and the old way of processing products does not meet the "no mold design concept" advocated by Apple, and was temporarily abandoned by Apple.
In the end, of course, Apple chose the same glass material as the front cover glass on the mobile phone body. In order to ensure the consistency of the language design of the product structure, it can also use its own supply chain with high efficiency and low cost. In terms of productivity, Apple's hardware innovations have also turned to the glass body in the appearance of structural components.
Facing the menacing glass body industry, manufacturers of casings, covers, and lenses are flooding
In fact, after the Apple iPhone4s was designed with a double glass body, the mobile phones of the Android camp followed suit. During this period, all brands launched similar flagship models of glass fuselage. This shows that Apple has demonstrated and led the smart phone industry. More powerful.
However, when Apple subsequently switched to the metal body, other Android brands basically followed Apple's change of direction, and also switched to the ranks of the metal fuselage, only Samsung was entangled with Apple at the time due to mobile phone design patent issues, in the flagship machine. The plastic and glass fuselage continue to be used on the model, and the process of these two materials is brought to the extreme.
In addition to using its rich plastic processing experience, Samsung has designed a variety of biomimetic plastic mobile phone body, and invented and developed a 3D glass body on glass materials, and put its own plastic in the era of functional machines. Thermal transfer technology has also been added to the processing of the 3D glass body, becoming an iconic technology for Samsung's flagship model.
After Apple returned to the glass body, the industry once judged that Apple would also join the 3D glass fuselage camp. Apple also had several patents to show future products that could be designed as a 3D glass body model. However, when Apple tested the 3D glass body, it discovered that not only the 3D glass's drop resistance was much lower than that of 2.5D glass, but its processing cost and processing cycle were far worse than those of 2.5D glass.
Of course, part of the reason is that the 3D glass fuselage is still a process that needs to design the mold, and the 3D glass in some film layer design, the existing 3D glass processing technology has temporarily reached the performance Less than Apple's demand, so Apple did not use 3D glass body.
In any case, the 3D glass body can be said to be an extreme product of the glass processing industry, so people in the industry have always believed that as long as the 3D glass body can be made better, it can cause terminal brands including apples. Note and add to your own material purchase list.
Moreover, with the development of metal body materials in the industry, due to excessive pursuit of cost-effectiveness, more and more to the back, the more likely to appear a variety of quality issues, especially with the four corners related to the location of the signal antenna, whether to save processing costs The use of plastics with insufficient strength to replace, once broken or good; or although it is all metal body, but due to the design of the internal structure of the material part of the fuselage caused by the lack of strength, often forced deformation so that it is easy to break the display module The group is also good; or we all have the suspicion of cutting corners, so that the strength of the metal fuselage is not as good as the performance of the plastic body, the metal fuselage finally became the industry in the last year after the yellow flowers yesterday.
Moreover, as the hardware innovation of smartphones stagnates, bottleneck growth appears in the growth of all supply chain vendors. In addition to trying to suppress rivals and compete for market share in the same-sector competition, they must face the purchase price that the industry must reduce each year. Therefore, finding new business breakthroughs has become a top priority for all supply chain companies.
The structure of the mobile phone body is rotated to the market of glass, so that the glass cover industry has a doubled market space. Of course, it also costs the entire supply chain companies are very concerned about the field, and the same business chain, the upstream and downstream companies will become A pioneer company that actively invests in glass cover processing.
Wherein the original metal casing companies, whether it is for survival needs, or for business expansion worth mentioning, the urgency of entering the glass cover processing field must be stronger than some other industry manufacturers, so such as BYD, Foxconn and other traditional CNC metal It is not surprising that airframe processing companies have invested heavily in glass cover processing.
The camera industry chain enterprises that are similar to the glass processing business think that they understand the performance of the glass lens is not lower than the ordinary glass cover plant. Therefore, they also believe that they can certainly overcome the processing problems of the glass cover plate and step up. Glass cover processing is also a matter of course, such as Acoustic Technology.
Of course, the traditional plastic fuselage processing companies, whether it is to go to the high-end market, or to expand their own business scope worth mentioning, but also with the metal housing manufacturers, there is investment in glass cover the full power of processing.
In order to be able to gain an advantage in the glass cover market, these manufacturers have basically chosen the 3D glass processing business to cut in. As with the previous analysis, they believe that as long as 3D glass is the best craft product, they can attract mobile phones. Brand manufacturer's purchase order.
In fact, for Android mobile phone brand manufacturers whose brand names are concentrated, they basically use the same strategy as Samsung and hope to use a 3D glass cover technology that looks better than Apple's 2.5D glass cover technology. Continue to release eyeballs in the industry and in the market to attract consumers' attention and gain more attention and opportunities for purchase.
Because of the investment scale of 3D glass cover production capacity, the investment scale of the original 2D and 2.5D glass cover plates is much higher. Therefore, from the time Apple switched to the glass body, the investment amount of the glass cover plate industry was several times per year. The increase in scale has attracted a great deal of attention from equipment manufacturers and material manufacturers in the industry.
According to statistics, from the second half of 2016, by the end of 2017, the industry’s direct investment in 3D glass processing capacity will add up to a total of close to 50 billion yuan. Indirect investment will be invested in equipment and materials related to 3D glass processing. It is also close to more than 13 billion.
In addition to Apple’s traditional two glass cover suppliers, it has added approximately 70 million 3D glass cover sheets and has a total production capacity of more than 200 million sheets. The 3D glass cover sheets invested by other companies in the industry add up to a similar capacity. With a scale of 100 million units, and the production capacity planned by various manufacturers will continue to grow at a rate of 100 million new chips each year if released as scheduled, the industry expects this situation to reach a total capacity of the industry that will approach 600 million 3D glasses annually. Will come to an end.

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