chapter  4
The servitization of Taiwan’s ICT manufacturing and its industrial upgrading
Pages 28

Introduction The information and communications technology (ICT) industry has been considered to be a sector of landmark underlying the success of Taiwan’s exportled industrialization and cluster-based development. Taiwan has been widely regarded as one of the major players in the ICT industry and quite a number of Taiwanese-made products, though not necessarily made in Taiwan, within the ICT subsectors, such as motherboards, scanners, monitors, notebook computers, personal computers, integrated circuits (ICs), and liquid crystal display (LCD) panels enjoy signi cant global market shares. What underlies this are the well-regarded production and design capabilities of the Taiwanese ICT producers, which, in turn, have made Taiwan a major source of original equipment manufacturing (OEM)/original design manufacturing (ODM) contract work for prominent, international ICT brand marketers, with the few exceptions of HTC Corporation, Acer, Inc., and ASUS. Due to intensi ed price competition and a trend of “razor-thin prots,” a central issue regarding the industrial upgrading of the Taiwanese ICT industry has surrounded the debate on branding versus OEM/ODM manufacturing (Chen et al. 2006; Chu 2009). However, changes in ground realities have brought about a new issue to the sector’s industrial upgrading, which arguably has much to do with the servitization of ICT manufacturing.