Chip Design Company Faces More Challenges than ever

The recent rash of printer firmware upgrades has focused the Aftermarket’s attention on the development of smartchip technologies.

With the continuous development of OEM chip technology, chip design companies are facing more challenges than ever.

Ding Li (pictured), CTO from Apex Microelectronics Co., Ltd said at the RemaxWorld Summit 2016, “If the OEM needs only one step to develop a new chip, remanufacturers has to make five times the efforts.”

“We do not have the datasheet of OEM chips, so it is difficult for us to make the chips work exactly as OEM ones. Moreover, we have to deal with the patent problems which also occupy a part of the chip’s source,” He added.

Mr. Ding pointed that firmware upgrade is the key problem that limits the printing consumables. In response, Apex has developed exclusive solutions besides strengthening the defense in chips, which include:

  • Self-developed APP to automatically monitor firmware upgrades, as well as special team monitoring and responding to this issue;
  • Unismart resettable system
  • New solution to solve serial number problem, namely ActivKit

Mr. Ding predicted the industry might face more challenges in the future. He revealed a total number of 714 firmware updates from July 2015 to July 2016, with at least 10 updates blocked replacement chips. He emphasized that patent is a core competence for remanufacturer to stand out the ever-intensifying competition. He revealed that Apex has applied 316 chip patents for now.

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