China is putting a competitive squeeze on some of its partners that still use the mainland as a source of low-cost design and manufacturing. Good Will Instrument, a 700-person test and measurement company in Taiwan, is just one of the companies feeling the pinch.
Good Will recorded 2010 revenues of $55 million selling spectrum analyzers, signal generators and other gear as much as 20 percent cheaper than big U.S. rivals such as Agilent and Tektronix.
Now, a growing crowd of China copy cats are going directly to Good Will's global distributors with products that undercut the Taiwan company's prices by as much as 50 percent.
More than 20 China T&M companies now compete with Good Will, up from about six a few years ago. They often copy Good Will and U.S. products slavishly, right down to the look-and-feel of the cases.
"The biggest problem with the China-made products is quality," says Helena Wang, a manager of overseas sales for Good Will. "Some use used LCDs or other components, and the systems are not always well calibrated so they can give inaccurate results," she explains.
But the Chinese companies--under names such as Regal, A10 and Unichem--are getting government backing. The money enables them to send large contingents to big European electronics shows to gain market attention, Wang says.
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I do not see why anyone is surprised that the Chinese are not playing by the rules. For centuries the western nations exploited the Chinese to build thier empires. Now China is just following their example to rebuild their country after its recent exploitation and make it an Asian, if not a World power.
So if you think China is your friend, think again. If you provide them with any intellectual property, they will copy it. If you do not secure your IP, they will find a way to take it any way they can.
Why? Because they can and no one wants to confront or provoke them because they still think China is an open market. It is not! You either play on China's terms or you get out.
David Patterson, known for his pioneering research that led to RAID, clusters and more, is part of a team at UC Berkeley that recently made its RISC-V processor architecture an open source hardware offering. We talk with Patterson and one of his colleagues behind the effort about the opportunities they see, what new kinds of designs they hope to enable and what it means for today’s commercial processor giants such as Intel, ARM and Imagination Technologies.