IDC Japan recently announced that in the first quarter, the sales of augmented reality and virtual reality headsets have increased by 70%. VR headset shipment rose 70% to 2.242 million units while AR devices gained 77% to 38,000 units. The market share of the companies are as follows: Samsung Electronics captured 22%, followed by Sony 19%, HTC from Taiwan 9%. While in the AR devices - Microsoft took 28%, Epson 19% and Intel 16%. In the Japanese market, Epson took 75% of total AR headset shipments and Sony 84% of VR devices' total units. IDC Japan forecasts that the sale of AR & VR headset in 2021 will grow 10x as compared to that in 2016, mainly due to rapid growth of VR terminals with reduced retail prices, focussed on consumer use. The company estimates that VR terminals will take up 73% of the VR and AR combined market. On the other hand, the IDC predicts that the AR sets will be used mainly by business sectors, such as the healthcare, manufacture and product design segments. The business-use AR devices took 68% of all AR shipments in 2016, which will be 83.3% in 2021. In the Japanese market, the combined shipments will be 1.05 million units in 2021 to grow nearly 9 times from about 120,000 units in 2016.
Reports suggest that Samsung Electronics will be investing approximately 2 trillion yen by 2021 in order to boost the flash memory production, at its factories in Korea. Samsung intends to secure the top position in the flash memory segment, while Toshiba is still in the process of selling its flash memory business unit— Toshiba Memory. Samsung will be investing in new product lines including its latest NAND type flash memory. The company's production capacity is expected to grow twice by 2021 with this additional investment. According to Research company, IHS Technology, in 2016, Samsung grabbed the top share in the flash memory market with 35.2%, followed by Toshiba 19.3%, Western Digital 15.5%, Micron Technology 12.0%, SK Hynix 10.1% and Intel 6.9% in terms of value.
Japanese MNC SHARP, recently launched a new smartphone AQUOS S2, which is currently available in the Chinese markets. It features a 5.5-inch, 100% bezel less display. SHARP AQUOS S2 with three bezels is currently the largest full screen smartphone. The company announced that it will continuously explore the field of 100% bezel less screen phone. SHARP aims at achieving technology breakthroughs in screen and anti-dropping technologies. The dimensions of AQUOS S2 are: 141.8 x 72 x 7.9 mm and it weighs 140 g (approximately). The smartphone is backed by a 3020mAh battery. It offers two variants - 4GB and 6GB RAM, providing internal memory of 64GB and 128GB respectively. The new AQUOS S2 is available in White, Black, Blue and Green colour variants. Sharing his thoughts at the launch, CEO of SHARP/InFocus Mobile- Dr. Luo Zhongsheng said, “The core of full screen design is to break through the technology limit, achieve the double sense of holding and visual comfort, and provide the ultimate experience for users.”