In a twist to the US’ import ban on various HTC Corp (宏達電) smartphones, the company yesterday said some of its products blocked by US customs because of patent-infringement concerns had been allowed to enter the US market after passing the customs’ review.
“Some of our products have passed the review and have been delivered to our telecoms operators’ clients in the US,” HTC said in a statement submitted to the Taiwan Stock Exchange yesterday.
The Taoyuan-based handset maker’s statement came after two of its flagship mobile phones, HTC One X and HTC EVO 4G LTE, were prevented by US customs from entering the country after the US International Trade Commission ruled late last year that HTC had infringed on a crucial patent held by Apple Inc.
“The company is closely working with the US customs to speed up the review,” HTC said in the statement. “The company is confident that the problem will be resolved soon.”
The US customs’ review went faster than a possible three-week examination estimated by Jeff Pu (蒲得宇), who tracks the handset industry for Fubon Securities (富邦證券), and that means the ban could have less impact on HTC’s revenue this quarter.
Originally, Pu expected US customs could spend up to three weeks checking HTC’s products, resulting in a reduction of 10 to 15 percent in the company’s revenue this quarter.
HTC, the world’s No. 5 smartphone maker, told investors last month that it expected revenue to grow 55 percent quarterly to NT$105 billion (US$3.55 billion) this quarter, recovering from a product transition period.
Last quarter, HTC’s shipments dropped 17 percent to 7.68 million units, compared with 9.3 million units in the previous year, because of competition from Apple Inc and Samsung, according to market researcher Gartner Inc’s statistics.
Tesla Inc temporarily halted some production at its auto assembly plant in California because of problems with its supply chain, but work has begun to resume, CEO Elon Musk told employees in an e-mail on Thursday. “We are experiencing some parts supply issues, so took the opportunity to bring Fremont production down for a few days to do equipment upgrades and maintenance,” Musk said in an all-staff message seen by Bloomberg. The factory was “back up and running as of yesterday,” and would rapidly ramp up to full production of Model 3 and Model Y cars “over the next several days,”
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The production value of Taiwan’s semiconductor industry grew 20.9 percent year-on-year to NT$3.22 trillion (US$113.6 billion) last year, and it is expected to build on that performance this year, the Industrial Technology Research Institute’s (工研院) Industry, Science and Technology International Strategy Center said yesterday. The global semiconductor market grew 6.8 percent to US$440.4 billion last year, boosted by robust demand from the digital transformation and growing stay-at-home economy seen during the COVID-19 pandemic, the center said. That strength is likely to carry over to this year, leading to an 8.6 percent increase in domestic output to a new record NT$3.49 trillion,