Items tagged with China

Apple has been struggling a bit with iPhone sales as it has allegedly slashed production numbers for Q1 2019 amid soft demand. Apple isn't the only smartphone maker feeling the pinch of a soft market, while iPhone sales are down, sales of Android devices are faltering, particularly in the high-end range where Samsung and Apple dominate. The weak demand is in part due to prices growing, and consumers are waiting for 5G devices to hit the market before upgrading. Apple has had a particularly hard road in China where its high-prices are sending consumers to Chinese brands like Huawei and Xiaomi, but Apple is not lying down in the Chinese market without a fight. The company has slashed the price... Read more...
The US Justice Department has filed a series of indictments against Huawei, China's largest telecommunications company, and its US affiliate. Huawei stands accused of several crimes, including a conspiracy to steal trade secrets from T-Mobile, more than half dozen counts of wire fraud, and obstruction of justice. US security and intelligence agencies have long warned against doing business with Huawei over concerns that it is spying for the Chinese government. Today's charges, however, are not directly related to those previous warnings. Instead, the Department of Justice says Huawei conspired to steal intellectual property from T-Mobile, and could end up paying millions of dollars if found guilty.... Read more...
Time and again, United States government officials and agencies have warned that Huawei and other Chinese telecommunication companies pose a security threat, due to spying concerns. Huawei has repeatedly denied being in bed with China's government, so to speak. Its founder recently doubled down on the company's denial that it's not a spy for China, while also acknowledging a love for his country and the Communist party. "I still love my country, I support the Communist party, but I will never do anything to harm any country in the world," Huawei founder Ren Zhengfei said, according to a report in the Financial Times. Zhengfei added that Huawei had "never received any request from any government... Read more...
You can only push prices so far before customers start turning away from your products. That seems to be the case with Apple's 2018 lineup of iPhones, which are the most expensive ever introduced for customers. A new report indicates that many Chinese retailers have taken the uncommon step of slashing the prices of relatively new iPhones in order to win the attention of customers. According to Reuters, popular Chinese retailers like Suning and JD.com are discounting models like the iPhone XR by as much as $118 off its starting price. In total, six retailers have instituted dramatic price cuts in order to spur iPhones sales according to the news organization.  At this point it's not... Read more...
Several astronauts have explored the far side of the moon, but no spacecraft has touched the surface until now. China just successfully landed its Chang'e-4 probe in the Von Kármán crater. The China National Space Administration reported that the probe landed on January 3rd at 10:26am Beijing Time (January 2nd at 9:26pm EST). The Chang’e-4 launched from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center in early December. The probe spent three days traveling to the moon and then a few weeks in orbit to prepare for its descent. Since the moon blocks radio transmissions, the Chang’e-4’s relay satellite was launched earlier this year. The Queqiao or “Magpie Bridge” is... Read more...
Apple and Qualcomm aren't on friendly terms right now considering that the two firms are currently embroiled in a long-running legal battle over patents and royalties. Qualcomm claims that Apple owes billions in royalty payments, while Apple maintains that its devices don't infringe on Qualcomm patents. Qualcomm was granted a sales ban on some older iPhone models in China and is now trying to add the iPhone XR and iPhone XS to the sales ban. Any possibility of having its new hotness banned in China has Apple scrambling to ready a software update that completely bypass the Qualcomm patents in question. Apple has confirmed that it will be pushing out software updates starting next week with... Read more...
The stakes in the ongoing legal drama between Apple and Qualcomm are getting higher. Earlier this week, a Chinese court sided with Qualcomm, imposing an import and sales ban on Apple products ranging from the iPhone 6s/iPhone 6s Plus on through to the iPhone X. The basis for the preliminary injunction was that Apple infringed upon two Qualcomm patents. Qualcomm is now going for the throat, and is asking Chinese courts to ban the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR. These represent Apple's most recent iPhones, and according to Apple's own figures, the iPhone XR is currently the company's best-selling smartphone.  Qualcomm is looking to use the same two patents... Read more...
What a difference a few weeks make. Back in late November, Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf said that his company was "on the doorstep" of coming to a resolution with Apple over LTE modem licensing fees and patents. Qualcomm President Cristiano Amon echoed these comments late last week, adding, "We feel like we are probably near the end of this game — we have a lot of legal milestones approaching. Well, it looks as though a quick and amicable resolution won't be coming anytime soon thanks to legal action in Qualcomm's favor that was executed today. The company announced that the Fuzhou Intermediate People’s Court in China has granted two preliminary injunctions against... Read more...
Corporate espionage is something that companies all over the world have to deal with. The latest major manufacturer to deal with the ramifications of corporate espionage is Samsung, as nine people have been indicted in South Korea for stealing Samsung's folding display trade secrets and selling them to China. Samsung showed off this folding display tech when it unveiled the folding Galaxy smartphone earlier this month. That smartphone is tipped to sell for as much as $2,500 and be limited in availability. While the people who sold the data can be brought to justice, there is no putting the genie back in the bottle, and the fear is that the stolen tech might end up in smartphones from Chinese... Read more...
Odds are you haven't heard of Zhaoxin; the company is a joint venture between Via Technologies (a name you may know) and the Chinese government. Zhaoxin has unveiled its coming x86-compatible CPU called the KaiXian KX-6000 that promises to be at least 50% better performing than the KX-5000 CPU the company offered before. Zhaoxin wants to use the KX-6000 to take some of the market share Intel and AMD currently own in the x86 CPU market. The KX-6000 is an eight-core x86-64 SoC with 8MB of L2 cache, a DirectX 11.1 compatible integrated GPU, dual-channel DDR4-3200 memory controller, and the usual mix of I/O interfaces that users expect. That means it supports PCIe, SATA, and USB, among other interfaces.... Read more...
China is a huge market for gaming, and likewise, Twitch is the largest streaming platform in the world. Unfortunately for Twitch, which is owned by Amazon, it will have to forge ahead without a presence in China, at least for now. China decided to block Twitch not longer after the streaming service experienced a surge in downloads in the area. Twitch is gone from Apple's App Store in China after recently rising to near the top of the chart, landing at No. 3 among free app downloads. The rise in downloads is attributable to the Asian Games, and state broadcaster CCTV deciding to now to air the esports event. As a result, users in China flocked to Twitch to tune into the event. It's a weird situation,... Read more...
In May, it was reported that Google workers were quitting over Google's involvement with a Pentagon project called Project Maven. Eventually, a petition made the rounds with Google workers demanding that the search giant sever ties with the military project. A new report is making the rounds that claims Googlers are quitting in protest to the relaunch of Google search in the Chinese market. Jack Poulson, identified as a senior Google research scientist in the research and machine intelligence department, quit in protest of Google's plans to launch a censored version of its search engine in China. The Chinese government has notoriously tight control over internet searches within the... Read more...
AMD's desktop class Ryzen 2000 series and upcoming Ryzen Threadripper WX series processors aren't the only Zen-flavored chips on the company's docket. The company announced today that it has a new semi-custom SoC that's available to customers that will allow them to design powerful gaming systems targeted for their respective markets. More specifically, these SoCs will initially go into gaming PCs and dedicated gaming consoles that will be released by Chinese firm Zhongshan Subor. The specs are relatively beefy, as it combines the brawn of Ryzen with the graphics prowess of Vega. Getting down to the specifications, the SoC features a 4-core/8-thread Ryzen (first-generation... Read more...
Apple customers living in China have a new set of privacy concerns to deal with, if they use the iPhone maker's iCloud service. While previously all their iCloud data was stored on servers located in the United States, Apple has agreed to transfer iCloud storage duties in China to a division of China Telecom, a state-owned telecommunications service. That outfit is called Tianyi, as first revealed in a WeChat post from China Telecom and later confirmed by Apple to TechCrunch. The concern for Apple users in China is that the state-owned agency now has access to a wealth of sensitive information, including text messages and email communications, and of course photos and videos. This transition... Read more...
China has no love for Taiwan, and the former's censorship has led to strange issues for some iPhone users. If users have their region set to China and someone sends them the Taiwan flag emoji, a bug in iOS could cause the app to crash. That bug has the potential to allow a remote user to launch a denial of service attack on the message receiver by continually sending them the Taiwan flag emoji. The bug was discovered by security researcher Patrick Wardle. Wardle says that the bug was first brought to his attention when a friend told him that iOS apps crashed when she typed the word "Taiwan" or received a message with the Taiwanese flag in it on a fully patched iPhone 7. In his debugging of the... Read more...
Could Huawei, a Chinese telecommunications company, be a threat to American national security? The United States Congress recently urged Google to reconsider their partnership with Huawei. The lawmakers believe that Huawei is capable of phone-tapping and cyber-espionage. Senators Marco Rubio and Tom Cotton and Representatives Michael Conaway, Liz Cheney, and Dutch Ruppersberger wrote a letter to Google CEO Sundar Pichai. They recommended that Google discontinue their relationship with Huawei, “...particularly since your company recently refused to renew a key research partnership, Project Maven, with the Department of Defense.” They also stated that they are “...even more disappointed... Read more...
Hackers employed by the Chinese government have purportedly stolen 614GB of sensitive data from a United States Navy contractor. The data potentially includes plans for a supersonic anti-ship missile and other information related to naval warfare. According to a report by The Washington Post, the breaches occurred in January and February of 2018. The Chinese hackers compromised a contractor who had been hired by the Naval Undersea Warfare Center. The Rhode Island-based military organization focuses on researching and developing submarines and naval weapons. Navy officials have not publicly identified the contractor. The stolen information was technically unclassified when isolated, but could... Read more...
It looks as though ZTE will live to see another day. After facing a near-certain death earlier this year when Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross imposed crippling sanctions on the company for violating an agreement with the U.S. government, a deal brokered in part by President Donald Trump has saved the Chinese company. As part of the new agreement, which was signed off [again] by Secretary Ross, ZTE has been given 30 days to replace its entire board of directors and senior leadership. It also has to pay a $1 billion fine and hold another $400 million in escrow. These hefty monetary fines are in addition to the $892 million fine that ZTE already paid for its original transgressions,... Read more...
The intricacies of Facebook's full data collection and sharing policies are not really known outside of the social network, but it is safe to assume that your information changes hands. Facebook does not hide this tidbit, even if the full scope is not known. What is known, however, is that Facebook has data sharing deals with four Chinese companies, perhaps more, including Huawei, Lenovo, Oppo, and TCL. These are not small firms by any means. Huawei is the world's third biggest smartphone player, while Lenovo often jostles with Hewlett-Packard for the top spot in computer shipments and market share. Oppo, meanwhile, is a well known smartphone maker, and so is TCL, which also makes reasonably... Read more...
It appears that the United States is backtracking on its decision to pummel Chinese electronics company ZTE into submission. In a tweet over the weekend, President Donald Trump revealed that he is working with Chinese President Xi Jinping to give ZTE some assistance in regaining the ability to purchase components from U.S. manufacturers. In his tweet, Trump specifically calls attention to the fact that many jobs in China will be lost and that the company should have the ability to restart its operations as soon as possible. On the first front, ZTE employees around 70,000 people, mostly in China. On the second front, ZTE announced last week that it shuttered "major business operations" as... Read more...
Many smartphone makers have seen China as their key market for growth over the last few years. Chinese consumers have been gobbling up smartphones despite the booming black market in the country for devices like iPhones. That black market is so robust that smugglers had taken to flying iPhones in by drone. Canalys has some numbers that look at the Chinese smartphone market and they aren't good. Smartphone shipments in China had their worst ever decline in Q1 2018, with shipments down 21% annually to 91 million units. Shipments haven't been that low since Q4 2013. The numbers also show that eight of the top ten smartphone vendors in China saw shipments decline. The hardest hit were Gionee, Meizu,... Read more...
The hits keep coming for Chinese telecom giant ZTE. Last week, the U.S. Department of Commerce announced that ZTE would be banned from buying components from U.S. companies for a period of 7 years due to its blatant disregard for a plea agreement to atone for previous transgressions.  Now, a major Chinese regulator is coming down hard on ZTE, and is blaming the company for making the country look bad. China's State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC), which regulates domestic enterprises, said that ZTE's actions were simply "stupid and passive". SASAC went on to add that not only do the actions (and sometimesinaction) taken by ZTE harm its own business... Read more...
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