Taipei, Thursday, December 14, 2017 06:26 (GMT+8)
White-box beating first-tier, who would have thought?
Joseph Tsai, DIGITIMES, Taipei [Friday 15 March 2013]

It may be an unthinkable scenario in the past, but the fact that China-based white-box ARM chipmakers are gradually winning their way into the first-tier market, has started to change the ecosystem we used to know of the IT market.

Price seems to have become the only guaranteed factor to attract consumer demand in the IT market as brand vendors such as Amazon and Google have all been trying to launch mobile devices that are the cheapest of them all.

For brand vendors with strong content libraries, selling hardware cheap would not greatly impact their income, but for pure brand vendors such as Asustek Computer and Acer, it would mean a serious profit drop. As a result, seeking cheaper components has become the only way pure brand vendors can break through their predicament.

Hewlett-Packard (HP) recently launched its Slate 7 tablet using a processor from China-based white-box chipmaker Rockchip, while Asustek, Acer and Lenovo also plan to follow along and release tablet models using white-box ARM processors to compete in the entry-level market.

With prices only half those of first-tier chipmakers and having computing performances only slightly off the first-tier chips, white-box ARM processors' advantages will only expand in the future, pushing more brand vendors to turn to purchase processors from white-box players, while prompting first-tier chipmakers to develop cheaper chips to compete.

China AMOLED panel capacity expansion forecast, 2016-2020
Global notebook shipment forecast, 2017 and beyond
  • China AMOLED panel capacity expansion forecast, 2016-2020

    This Digitimes Research Special Report examines the China AMOLED industry, focusing on the expansion capacity of the makers, the current implementation plans of major smartphone vendors in the market and the technological hurdles faced by the China makers.

  • Taiwan server shipment forecast and industry analysis, 2017

    Digitimes Research estimates that revenues from sales of server motherboards, servers, storage systems and related network system equipment by Taiwan-based vendors reached NT$555.8 billion in 2016 and the amount is estimated to grow 5.9% on year in 2017.

  • Global notebook shipment forecast, 2017 and beyond

    This Digitimes Special Report examines key factors in the notebook industry, including products, vendors and ODMs, that will affect total shipments in 2017 and through 2021.