Samsung follows up on sanctions! Announcement to suspend shipments to Russia

Samsung Electronics said on Saturday (5th) that it has suspended shipments to Russia based on the current geopolitical development, and will continue to actively monitor this complex situation to determine the next step.

According to data from market research agency Counterpoint, as of the fourth quarter of 2021, Samsung smartphones had a 30% market share in Russia, ranking first, ahead of Xiaomi (23%) and Apple (13%).

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has sparked sanctions from many countries and criticism from the international community. Brands such as Apple, Nike and IKEA have stopped or suspended their business in Russia. Of course, changes in shipping routes may also be one of the factors to be considered.

Counterpoint data pointed out that Chinese mobile phone brands will account for 44% of the Russian market in 2021, and Chinese officials have frequently avoided criticizing Russia for invading Ukraine, so Chinese companies have basically remained silent about their business in Russia.

In addition, Samsung will donate $6 million, including $1 million in consumer electronics and voluntary employee donations, to actively support humanitarian relief efforts and local refugees.

It is reported that Russia and Ukraine will start the third round of negotiations, which is expected to be held next Monday (7th).

South Korea’s GDP per capita is faster than Japan’s, Nikkei: South Koreans don’t feel it

A few days ago, the Japanese media heavily reported data from the Japan Economic Research Center, which suggested that the per capita GDP of South Korea and Taiwan will surpass Japan in a few years. Beating Japan in 2018, the gap will only widen in the future. But South Korean economic experts say the data doesn’t necessarily capture the full picture, with most South Koreans not enjoying the economic fruits.

According to the latest research by the Japan Center for Economic Research (JCER), by 2028, Taiwan’s per capita wealth will surpass Japan’s, which has also attracted a lot of media coverage in Taiwan. Exports rebounded rapidly after the epidemic, and Taiwanese people have a feeling that everyone is rich or is on the way to becoming rich, and that Taiwan will return to the head of the four little dragons in a few years.

Overtaking Japan, South Korea will be one step ahead of Taiwan. The Japan Economic Research Center expects South Korea to surpass Japan in nominal GDP per capita in 2027, and the South Korean media also made headlines, but South Korea and Taiwan reacted differently, and it seems that few South Koreans discuss the issue. The Nikkei Review noted that South Koreans’ lack of interest in the issue appears to reflect South Korea’s grim economic reality that “ordinary workers are not feeling the benefits of the country’s economic progress.”

The analysis pointed out that South Korea is known for its long working hours in terms of hourly productivity, and South Korea remains at the bottom of the OECD rankings in terms of hourly productivity. And while South Korea’s average salary exceeds Japan’s, income inequality is also rising rapidly.

The reason is that big company unions have huge influence in South Korea, and under political pressure, chaebol family conglomerates and other big companies are often forced to agree to aggressive wage increases demanded by unions. Widening the pay gap between large companies and small businesses, which make up the majority of South Korean employers.

To live a stable and comfortable life, South Korean graduates know that they must squeeze into big companies or enter the government to take full-time jobs. This has led to an employment crisis for South Korean youth. The youth unemployment rate is about 25%. Many people simply give up looking for jobs, and the employment rate has also declined.

In order to protect the wages of young people, President Moon Jae-in has raised the minimum wage by 42% within five years since he took office in 2017. Now the minimum wage in South Korea is US$7.66 an hour, which is not far from Japan, but it has the opposite effect. Many independent companies simply ignore part-time jobs. staff.

Furthermore, using PPP to calculate GDP per capita ignores real estate prices. Since Moon Jae-in took office, apartment prices in Seoul have more than doubled in less than five years, making it impossible to buy a house in Seoul without parental support.

South Korea’s fertility rate in 2020 is only 0.84, half that of Japan and lower than Taiwan’s 0.99. Young South Koreans say the reasons for not having children are huge debt and high housing prices, the poverty rate of the elderly is about twice that of Japan, and the suicide rate among the younger generation has recently increased by 30%. In recent years, the world-famous Spanish pilgrimage route has frequently seen young South Koreans, which reflects the resolute will of the South Koreans, and perhaps how strong the uncertainty in their hearts. Economic data is out of touch with reality, and South Koreans don’t feel that life has actually improved, so surpassing Japan’s numbers is nothing to celebrate.

The internal operation of the memory is gradually realized, and SK hynix announced the successful development of PIM technology

South Korean memory manufacturer SK Hynix announced that it has developed a next-generation memory semiconductor technology PIM (processing-in-memory) with computing functions, which will be officially announced at a public meeting later.

SK hynix said that the new PIM technology plan was announced at the 2022 International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC) conference in San Francisco, USA at the end of February. SK hynix emphasized that PIM chips will continue to develop with PIM technology, and ICT products such as smartphones can be expected to play more core application functions in the future, and even achieve the goal of Memory Centric Computing.

At present, SK hynix has developed the first product GDDR6-AiM (Accelerator-in-Memory) sample using PIM technology. GDDR6-AiM is a GDDR6 memory product that adds computing functions to a data transfer speed of 16Gbps. Compared with traditional DRAM, the combination of GDDR6-AiM with CPU and GPU can increase the computing speed up to 16 times in specific computing environments. , so that GDDR6-AiM is expected to be widely used in machine learning, high-performance computing, big data computing and data storage.

The working voltage of GDDR6-AiM is 1.25V, which is lower than the standard working voltage of GDDR6 memory of 1.35V, and the PIM application also reduces the data transmission between CPU and GPU, reducing CPU and GPU energy consumption. In this case, GDDR6-AiM can successfully reduce power consumption by up to 80%.

Streaming Video and Audio 2022 Top Matchup, Asian Content the Key to Victory

After the South Korean movie “Squid Game” became a global hit in the second half of last year, Asian video content has been gaining a foothold in the top competition of major streaming video platforms around the world.

With the emergence of more and more video platforms, the competition in the global streaming market has become increasingly fierce, and the recent global popularity of Asian movie collections has highlighted that Asian video content will be an important key for major platforms to expand their markets and consolidate their territories in the coming years.

Streaming platform market map, Asia Pacific can not be ignored
In recent years, the development of streaming video and audio platforms has increasingly relied on the growth of the Asia Pacific region. The Wall Street Journal quoted data from research firm Insider Intelligence, which showed that the number of global AV subscription services has increased from 457 million in 2016 to 1.7 billion today. The proportion of Asian subscribers has also risen from about 30% in 2016 to 60%.

Asian viewers’ viewing habits, local content more valued
In addition, Nikkei recently analyzed the viewing habits of streaming platform users in the Asia-Pacific region and found that viewers in these countries are more likely to watch content produced in the region and in their own countries.

In the second half of last year, the US streaming leader Netflix ranked the top 10 most popular movies of the week in all major markets, including Japan, South Korea and Thailand, and all of the non-US productions that have been on the list for more than five weeks are South Korean or locally produced. In contrast, the U.S. market had only “The Squid Game” in the second half of last year, the only non-U.S. film on the list for a long time.

Therefore, if streaming platforms want to expand their market presence in the Asia Pacific region, they obviously need to cater to the tastes of Asia Pacific viewers and invest in more local content.

South Korean content is a must-have for squid games
The South Korean movie “Squid Game”, which swept the world last year and was heavily invested by Netflix, is not only an important milestone in Netflix’s long-term investment in Asian TV content, but also makes South Korean TV productions become the target of cooperation among major platforms.

Combining survival games and social issues, “The Squid Game” was watched for a record 1.65 billion hours worldwide within 28 days of its launch, making it the most watched series in Netlfix’s history.

Netflix started to enter the South Korean market in 2016, and after a few years of working with local production companies, it has found a formula that combines the originality of South Korean film and television with border-sensitive themes, and has developed popular works such as “Kingdom of the Dead” and continues to increase its investment in the South Korean market. To date, Netflix has spent more than US$1 billion in South Korea.

South Korean TV productions have become an important tool for streaming platforms to attract new subscribers and consolidate their existing viewership, and the platforms have been increasing the price of Korean dramas. Studio Dragon, the production company that produced such famous Korean dramas as Crash Landing on You Medley, has increased the price of its third season last year to streaming platforms by 24%, highlighting that Korean dramas have become the most sought-after source of content.

Disney’s strategy shifts as Netflix becomes a big success
After the popularity of “The Squid Game,” the major streaming platforms have become concerned about how they will expand into the Asian market.

Netflix’s main rival, Disney’s streaming platform Disney+, announced at the end of last year that it was expanding its global market footprint, and in addition to officially launching in South Korea, Taiwan and Hong Kong in November 2021, it will also launch about 50 titles in the Asia-Pacific region by 2023.

The Nikkei News analyzed that Disney+’s development strategy is obviously influenced by Netflix’s “Squid Game” global hit. Disney, which has popular series such as Star Wars and Marvel, has always had a Hollywood-centric development strategy. The shift to local productions now reflects Disney’s attempt to change its past business strategy to cater to the Asian market.

Other than the two leaders, the Asian market is growing in numbers
In addition to the competition between Netflix and Disney, Amazon has announced that it will produce and acquire content for its Prime Video streaming platform in Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia and Singapore, among other Southeast Asian countries in 2022. AT&T’s (Warner Media) HBO MAX is also preparing to launch streaming services in Asia. Baidu and Tencent-backed video platform IQiyi is developing content outside of China and expanding its services in the Asia Pacific region.

As we enter 2022, the streaming market in Asia is bound to become more competitive, but that means viewers can look forward to more great titles coming to the shelves for you to choose from.