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Panel maker BOE teams with Qualcomm despite US-China rivalry

Written by Nikkei Asia Published on 

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Tie-up to start with OLED panels with ultrasonic fingerprint sensors.

Chinese display manufacturer BOE Technology Group and US chipmaker Qualcomm announced a partnership Wednesday to develop panels with an advanced fingerprint recognition technology, even as tensions between Washington and Beijing make such arrangements difficult.

As a first step, BOE plans to mass-produce organic light-emitting diode displays that incorporate Qualcomm’s ultrasonic fingerprint sensors. This will allow smartphone makers to create products with super-thin and highly secure fingerprint readers, as well as streamline supply chains, the announcement said. Panels with the integrated sensors are expected to begin shipping late this year.

The companies expect the partnership to cover fifth-generation mobile technology, the internet of things, and virtual and augmented reality.

Despite the US-China race for technological supremacy, many American companies still see promise in the Chinese market. These include Qualcomm, which has a number of Chinese customers, including rising smartphone makers such as Huawei Technologies and Xiaomi.

The partnership with BOE gives Qualcomm another growth avenue in China and offers BOE access to cutting-edge technology.

“As a global leader in the semiconductor display industry,” BOE provides users worldwide with “excellent intelligent interface devices and solutions” said Gao Wenbao, chief executive officer of displays and sensors at BOE.

Qualcomm “continuously strives to improve our collaboration in China, and collaboration with BOE will be another example of the dedication and our long-term commitment to driving innovations in this vibrant ecosystem,” said Qualcomm chief operations officer Roawen Chen.

This article first appeared on Nikkei Asian Review. It’s republished here as part of 36Kr’s ongoing partnership with Nikkei. 36Kr is KrASIA’s parent company.

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