Highlights of Smartphone Industry Forum 2018—Global Trend of Device ODM and Smartphone Components

On 24 Apr, Counterpoint Research and NEPCON EXPO collaborated to host the SMARTPHONE INDUSTRY FORUM 2018—GLOBAL TREND OF DEVICE ODM AND SMARTPHONE COMPONENTS, at the World Exhibition and Convention Center in Shanghai. During the forum, Counterpoint Research directors James Yan and Tarun Pathak, together with industry experts from leading OEM and ODM companies ZTE, HUAQIN TELECOM and HIPAD INTELLIGENT, delivered detailed keynote speeches and shared with the audience, the insights on the latest trends in the global smartphone market, local and overseas manufacturing, and the corporate development strategies of the key market players.

Key highlights from the presentations:

James Yan, Research Director, Counterpoint Technology Market Research

Topic: Market Dynamics and Development Trend of Global Smartphone OEM and ODM

During the speech, James shared the latest research from Counterpoint’s global smartphone & ODM tracker, which includes the current market landscape & future forecast, key vendors’ performance, regions poised for growth, and development outlook of ODM business models. According to James, outsourced manufacturing will continue to rise and exceed 50% in the coming years, with more smartphone OEMs slated to cooperate with ODM partners to drive go-to-market practice. However, as the smartphone market is getting increasingly saturated in China and developed countries, ODM companies, which are led by Chinese players, may need to consider either vertically expanding businesses to new areas such as IoT, AR/VR and smart wearables, or horizontally deploying resources in overseas emerging markets such as India and South-East Asia. Whatever direction they choose, financial control, asset management and local government policies are the key challenges ODMs must be cautious about.

(Please see here for Counterpoint’s latest report on global ODM/IDH Market Analysis)


Tarun Pathak, Associate Research Director, Counterpoint Technology Market Research

Topic: South East Asia Mobile Market Analysis

Tarun focused on the analysis of South East Asia (SEA) mobile markets, which are showing great development potential with sizable population and growth quadruple that of the global average.  Tarun presented detailed information on the SEA mobile ecosystem (both regionally and by country), including smartphone market and key vendor performance, reasons behind the rise of Chinese brands and dynamics of the growing internet ecosystem (e-commerce, OTT, ride hailing etc.). Furthermore, Tarun deep-dove into the local production rules and OEM-EMS mapping in key manufacturing centers such as Vietnam and Indonesia. At the end of the presentation, Tarun outlined indicators to evaluate the opportunities and challenges among the world’s key manufacturing regions (China, India, SEA and Brazil), which grabbed the attention of the audience from OEM, ODM and EMS companies anxious to improve their global manufacturing strategy.

(Please see here for Counterpoint’s latest report on SEA Mobile Ecosystem & Local Manufacturing Analysis)


Bryan Yan, Cost Manager, Operation Planning Dept, Product Operation Center, Terminal Business Division, ZTE

Topic: Leading the Evolution in 5G Era

Bryan Yan, Cost Manager from ZTE’s terminal business, represented ZTE to attend the forum and delivered a speech on ZTE’s continuous efforts and contribution in the evolution of the global telecom and wireless communication industry. Bryan highlighted ZTE’s development roadmap in the upcoming 5G era, and the significance ZTE has placed on the R&D of 5G technologies. According to Bryan, by the end of 2019, ZTE will partner with key telecom operators in China, Japan, the U.S. and Europe, to launch the commercialized 5G services in these regions.  “We’ve been through many hard times in the past, and we are now experiencing a very difficult time as you all know. Yet with our innovation capabilities and perseverance, we will never give up, and we will grow stronger instead of being beaten down by threats and challenges.” said Bryan.


KK Wang, Director, Business Planning Department, Huaqin Telecom

Topic: Integrating Resources to Boost the Globalization of Chinese Companies

KK Wang, Director of Business Planning from the world’s leading ODM company Huaqin Telecom, spoke about the development footprint and success experiences of the ODM giant, and the best value ODM companies can bring to smartphone OEMs. According to KK, ODM companies have strengths in three major areas, namely, R&D capabilities in product development & innovation, efficient supply chain management in the complex components procurement & product manufacturing process, and experiences in product testing with foreign operators in globalization practice. “To launch even the same smartphone model in an overseas market is a more complicated project than people expect, due to the discrepancies in communication technologies and government policies in different countries. Thus, it is a smart decision for smartphone OEMs to partner with ODM companies like Huaqin, as we have the best knowledge, long-established experiences and extensive operator network to help them ‘pass the game’ more smoothly.” KK indicated.


James Chen, Group VP, Hipad Intelligent

Topic: The  Global Strategy of Smart Manufacturing—Sharing of Hipad Experiences in India

James Chen, Group VP of Hipad Intelligent who has been working with Hipad since the establishment of the company, attended the forum and shared with the audience the development roadmap of Hipad Intelligent in both the PC and mobile phone era. “Moving forward, Hipad will implement the “5+1 strategy” in global markets— to integrate “smart manufacturing” in “5 production lines” (see photos above)” said James. In terms of globalization practice, James shared the production capability of Hipad in India, and expressed his confidence in the immense potential of the Indian market. “Currently we have two factories in India which can produce a combined output of around 2.7million units of mobile phones per month. We’ve been cooperating closely with Xiaomi to support the Mi ecosystem in India.  In 2018, Hipad will continue to value India market a lot, and place better resources in India to develop more partners and business opportunities.” Said James.


For details on Counterpoint Research Global Smartphone Market Analysis, Global ODM/IDH Market Analysis, Regional Mobile Market Insights (China, the U.S., India, SEA and etc.), please contact:


Counterpoint research is a young and fast growing research firm covering analysis of the tech industry. Coverage areas are connected devices, digital consumer goods, software & applications and other adjacent topics. We provide syndicated research reports as well as tailored. Our seminars and workshops for companies and institutions are popular and available on demand. Consulting and customized work on the above topics is provided for high precision projects.

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